BRONX TIMES REPORTER, FEBRUARY 1 BTR 5-21, 2019 3
Another truck jammed under the el on Wednesday, February, 13.
Photo courtesy of Assemblyman Victor Pichardo’s Offi ce
drivers surprised by
Jerome Avenue wedgie
BY ALEX MITCHELL
It’s a problem that’s been ongoing
and one Bronx assemblyman says
enough is enough.
Trucks getting wedged under the elevated
#4 IRT line structure has been
quite a headache in Assemblyman Victor
When a full size large tractor-trailer’s
roof was peeled back like a sardine
can at the intersection of Jerome Avenue
and Cameron Place on Thursday
February 7, Pichardo had seen it all.
“It takes about four to fi ve hours
to clean up the mess afterwards,” the
assemblyman said, noting how the
truck’s removal snarls traffi c. This
instance was at least the tenth time it
has happened since he became assemblyman
One of the worst occurances happened
when a car carrying tractortrailer
didn’t clear the train structure,
pushing four vehicles off the truck to
the street below in 2017.
“The situation is incredibly frustrating,”
Pichardo explained that the intersections
of East 181st Street and Jerome
Avenue as well as E 176th Street
and Jerome Avenue are the most troublesome
low clearance locations.
Since that portion of Jerome Avenue
sloops downward from north
to south, the height of the trestle decreases
at several locations to the
point where the average tractor-trailer
doesn’t clear the structure.
The NYC Department of Transportation
has afi xed ‘Maximun Clearance’
signs throughout the troublesome
stretch of Jerome Avenue. The
areas that have a height limit posted at
12’ 4” seem to be causing the crashes.
One trestle crossmember has been
hit so often its steel has been literally
bent downwards, reducing the location’s
actual clearance another one
and a half inches.
“So clearly it’s not the exact height
posted,” Pichardo said pointing to one
of the bent frames on Friday, February
He cited three main causes for the
traffi c nightmare, the fi rst being that
truck drivers are either unaware or
ignoring the clearance signs as well
as being unfamiliar with the truck
“Certain trucks aren’t even allowed
to pass through streets like Jerome
Avenue, so many of the ones that get
stuck shouldn’t even be on that road
(to start with),” he added saying, that
businesses that expect truck deliveries
also have a responsibility to ensure
their trucks are taking the proper
routes and warning the drivers about
the clearance restrictions.
“We have to be aggressive enforcing
that with the NYPD,” Pichardo said.
He also mentioned that some of the
height signage on Jerome Avenue is inaccurate
due to blacktopping and road
repair work, which is also contributing
to a thicker roadbed.
Pichardo is currently working with
DOT to meet and come up with a more
realistic solution for the problem at
“As offi cials we have to do a better
job as well,” the assemblyman admitted.
Fittingly enough, as of press time,
another tractor-trailer became wedged
under the same bent frame as the one
last week at East 181st Street and Cameron