NEW YORK – A large truck struck and killed an on-duty New York Police Department traffic enforcement agent Saturday afternoon, police said.
The uniformed worker, who hasn't been identified, was declared dead at the midtown Manhattan scene at about 2:30 p.m., police and fire officials said, after he was pinned under the truck.
Antonio Trinidad, a doorman who witnessed the incident, called it a "freak accident."
"The guy got clipped by the truck and he got rolled up under the tire," Trinidad told the New York Daily News. "It was a freak accident."
The driver, who remained at the scene, has not been charged and the investigation is ongoing, police said.
Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly told reporters outside the scene that the agent's death was "gut-wrenching."
"These people don't make a lot of money, but they're out there in the middle of some heavy traffic, worst possible weather, day and night," he said. "So it's a dangerous job, but unfortunately, things like this can sometimes happen."
Traffic enforcement agents issue summonses to illegally parked cars, direct traffic at intersections and perform other traffic related tasks. Representatives from CWA Local 1182, the union that represents the agents, didn't immediately return a message seeking comment.
The holiday weekend is often one of the busiest times of years for traffic enforcement agents, as residents often mistakenly believe parking rules are suspended after Thanksgiving.
In 2008, a traffic enforcement agent who was seven months pregnant was hit and killed by two cars in the Bronx. Doctors were able to deliver her son but he died eight days later.