After a typical light, summer
shower, you're back riding on the streets that are constantly under
construction. Crossing one of the ubiquitous steel construction plates,
suddenly a car swerves your way. You brake hard, your tires slide on the slick
steel and bang you're down. Why? Because in June 1998, NYC DOT eliminated the
regulation that required steel plates covering street excavations to be skid
Some contractors applying to DOT for work permits are taking this change seriously. Unfortunately, many are not - it is easy to find many super slick plates littering the streets. You can help banish the bad plates. Phone CALL-DOT (225-5368) and report the location of the plate and the contractor will be issued a violation. Write to DOT Commissioner Iris Weinshall and thank her for the skid resistant plate regulation. Urge her to go one step further and require contractors to leave streets cuts unfilled (to a maximum of one-inch deep) for a no more than twenty-four hours.
Check out the steel plate of the future. The gritty surface should make cycling on NYC's continually re-constructed streets less frightening.