RIOC Public Safety Weirdness Just Got Weirder


On Roosevelt Island, you get used to Public Safety weirdness. The overstaffed, expensive RIOC department, unable to control even bicycles and crosswalks, serves more than anything else as a 21st Century Meter Maid Service. But this is weird, even for them.

by David Stone

The Roosevelt Island Daily News

RIOC Public Safety Weirdness

Let’s start with a picture.

Barricade set up on Main Street in front of a fire hydrant in June 2021.

We first noticed this in June, last year. Like most of you, we thought it must keep cars and trucks away from some hidden danger. A sinkhole? Some object under the striped drum in the middle?

Turns out, all of us were wrong, and in fact, it marks a news high in lows for Public Safety weirdness. Over six months later PSD Chief Kevin Brown told the Residents Association Common Council that the barricade blocked cars and trucks from parking in front of the hydrant.

That’s like, “You can’t violate safety standards because we got there first.”

A head-scratcher…

That’s right. The already clueless RIOC department, where EADD abounds, can’t get out of its own way. But they see the logic in blocking off space in front of a fire hydrant, so drivers can’t do it. Doesn’t it just make you want to shout, “Hey, Kevin, that’s what the red paint on the curb is for!”

But even thickheadedness has limits. After public exposure in the Roosevelt Islander blog, the barricade vanished.

Main Street in front of the Deli before the fire hydrant barricade went up.

But suspending Public Safety weirdness is a tenuous thing.

“The Barriers are back up by Bread & Butter Deli!!!” a perplexed and confounded reader wrote. “Well, I guess RIOC & PSD couldn’t help themselves,” she added.

It’s weird. That’s all, but don’t expect it getting better. RIOC is rudderless, and EADD rules.

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