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Locals want halt on stop trap

Brooklyn Daily
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Marine Park residents say the police department is using a confusing stop sign to trap motorists and drum up ticket revenue.

The stop sign on Avenue V near E. 38th Street sits several feet in front of the white line painted at the intersection, and drivers do not know whether to stop at the sign, the line, or both — which is leading to unwarranted tickets, said resident John Cortese.

“It just bothers me that they’re trapping people,” Cortese said.

Cortese’s daughter, who didn’t want to give her first name, said police handed her a $138 ticket for running a stop sign, even though she halted at the sign but not the line after it.

She doubts the officer could even see her roll over the line from his vantage point, parked on E. 38th Street facing away from the intersection.

“It was ridiculous,” she said. “He couldn’t have seen me.”

The “L”-shaped intersection is essentially a 90-degree turn with a stop sign. Drivers have no choice but to turn right onto E. 38th Street and there is no oncoming traffic from the left, leaving little room for traffic accidents.

And there isn’t enough foot traffic in the area to justify the crackdown, according to Cortese.

“Unless you are sneaking out of the golf course through the overgrown weeds, there is no pedestrian traffic there,” he said.

There were four collisions reported at the intersection between August 2011 and December 2013, none of which involved pedestrians or resulted any in injuries, according to police crash report data compiled by

A police department spokesperson would not comment on residents’ complaints, but representatives from the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles said motorists must stop at the line, not the sign. The state law reads “a vehicle approaching a stop sign shall stop at a clearly marked stop line.”

A spokesperson from the Department of Transportation — which is responsible for sign placement and line-painting on city streets — said the department has not received any complaints about the location, but plans to check out the location and make changes if necessary.

The ticketed woman said she will not pay the fine unless she has to.

“I’m definitely going to fight the ticket,” she said.

Reach reporter Max Jaeger at or by calling (718) 260-8303. Follow him on Twitter @MJaeger88.
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Reader Feedback

Brooklyn girl from Marine Park says:
That sign is fairly new and as stated there isn't much foot traffic. I go that way all the time and never understood why it was placed there. They need to put them where they are needed, for example. E. 33 and ave T where the cars speed down the block to make the traffic light on ave U. I'm afraid my kids are going to get hit while crossing the street to go into Marine Park
Feb. 20, 2014, 1:19 pm
Colleen Donnery from Gerritsen Beach says:
I find this utterly ridiculous! Wow, four car accidents and they put a stop sign where there is only one way for traffic to go. We on Gerritsen Avenue and Channel Avenue by PS277 a Public School have been fighting for over 20 years for a Stop sign or a traffic light and never got it!! There have been too many accidents to count and pedestrians killed and hit. You got to be kidding. Who is paying who off here? Something is wrong, very very wrong !! Absurd!
Feb. 20, 2014, 4:13 pm
Mat from Marine Park says:
When E.38th Street ran south, it made slightly more sense, since those cars were turning into what became a two way street (Ave. V). But since it is now Northbound only, a stop sign and a pavement paint mark do not contribute to safety. Only to a sudden stop as an afterthought and a rear ending for following too closely. A more accurate sign that says" SLOW, Parkland/playground and ball field area, or Children at Play, or You are in a Residential Area would be wiser. How about a reminder to Yield to Pedestrians who have the right of way according to VTL...
Feb. 20, 2014, 5:16 pm
Marine Parker from Marine Park says:
What garbage the local Pct. is! Hey guy's why not do something about the dollar vans that endanger lives and operate outside the law on Flatbush Ave. every day? Answer, the local Pct and it's commander pander to the minorities and punish the locals. SCREW that Pct! They have nothing but excuses as to why they don't do their job. Hey dummies! It's Community Policing not policing the community!
Feb. 20, 2014, 7:35 pm
E 38th resident from Marine Park says:
What is wrong with you people, it's a stop sign, not a three hour light. Just stop for it. What's wrong, it's stopping you from making the light on Ave. U. I live on this block and it has become dangerous ever since they changed the light on Flatbush Ave. and Ave. V to accommodate more cars to turn. Well all those cars now come down my block at high rates of speed. As residents of this block we pleaded with the precinct to do something since the stop sign is not working. If you don't like the stop sign than don't come down my block, which you are only coming down to avoid the lights on Flatbush Ave or Ave U. It's a simple stop sign, so stop complaining. The only reason to have a problem with it is if it is slowing you down. To Bad.
Feb. 20, 2014, 11:35 pm
E 38th resident from Marine Park says:
I live on the block and have two young kids. Besides the residents, there is also a baseball field and park on the block. Many people speed to make the light on Avenue U, putting young kids in danger.

Not only do I think the stop sign is needed, I also feel that the DOT should should put a light if not 2 on Avenue V to slow traffic down.
Feb. 21, 2014, 11:18 am
E 38th resident #2 from Marine Park says:
No one is saying that the stop sign is not needed nor that people should speed up your block. Just fix the confusing situation by either moving the stop sign to the pole closer to the corner or repaint the stop line to be even with the stop sign. Then have the police give tickets if people don't stop AND set up to catch speeding cars.
Feb. 21, 2014, 5:53 pm
Mike Rhatigan from Marine Park Ryder St says:
I agree with both of the E 38th st family lives on Ryder St btw Ave U and Ave V....Ryder St is another street that inconsiderate residents from the area speed down routinely in order to avoid Flatbush wife, myself and our three children routinely walk to the Snake Park, The Salt Marsh, Marine Park, and the Gerritsen Library...the stop sign on Ave V and E 38th st is definitely needed....crossing at the corner was scary with children and a stroller prior to the Stop sign forcing us to either run across or jaywalk further down the block, of which both situations were directly hypocritical to what we've been trying to teach our children about crossing the street ie cross at the corner and don't run while crossing to "beat" unfortunate and self centered some of the residents of this fine area are to comment that there "isn't enough" foot traffic to warrant a sign....tell that to my wife and kids...any foot traffic there warrants a stop you expect everyone to believe your time is that important that you can't stop for a second to increase the quality of life for all or the area's residents? So I guess it's fine for me to speed down your block just because I don't live on it.....additionally my family is often returning from our travels and are appalled at how many people roll the Stop sign at Ryder St and Ave V all while only looking towards Flatbush and never even glancing to the right to see if anyone is trying to cross from the E38 St side....Ave V and Ave U are both speedways know to the Dept of Transportation....if you are unhappy with the Stop sign, you will be very unhappy with the future traffic calming measures that will be coming to the area....
Feb. 21, 2014, 7:34 pm
Fed Up On E38th from Marine Park says:
All the people complaining about the stop sign, can feel free to leave your address so I can race down your block at all hours of the night, and crash into your car. First of all, 4 accidents is enough, but we've had way more than that, including my nieces car last week that was smashed on the corner by a hit and run driver. The peice of garbage didn't STOP for the UNNECESSARY STOP SIGN and wrecked her car. The fence was smashed in many times by cars racing around the turn and not making it. Then there is my next door neighbor who had his car hit, he had it fixed and the next week, hit and wrecked again. And the other neighbor who's car was hit by a speeding kid, she had it fixed and a week later hit by a speeding motorcycle. I can list them all if you want. Do we need to wait for a kid to be hit? Is that the criteria for making a stop sign and speed bumps necessary? Just because you don't have a stop sign doesn't mean we don't need one. We have a park, a playground and 2 little league fields loaded with kids. Feel free to go down someone else's block. We are in the process of getting speed bumps approved. Will that be a bother to you people. Stop whining and STOP for the STOP sign and slow the hell down. If you don't like it, go down Flatbush Ave to Ave U. No Stop signs to whine about.
Feb. 22, 2014, 1:11 pm
EASt 38th st resident #2 says:
NO ONE IS SAYING NOT TO STOP, SPEED OR REMOVE the STOP SIGN...just fix the confusion by moving the stop sign up to the line or repaint the line to be even with the sign. That's all.
Feb. 23, 2014, 10:14 am
Another E 38 street resident from Marine park says:
The sign is quite in the open. It is even written in big block letters on the ground. There is really no excuse to say "you didn't see it" and slowing down is not stopping. We have children and a park on this street and it's rediculouse that people have to worry about crossing the street. I can not say how many times I have almost been hit walking my pet as cars speed through the turn and then race down our block.

And to the police I would like to say thank you for sitting on our block and writing those that ignore the sign and speed. There has been a great drop in those actions as people start to realize its a good idea to stop. I am sure I can say this for the majority if not the entire street, thank you!
Feb. 25, 2014, 4:25 pm

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