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Errant drivers destroy lawn, peace at Bayside house

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Cars careening off East Hampton Boulevard in Bayside have left a trail of destruction over the years on Loretta Aiello’s corner property, and she is rallying neighbors for more traffic controls on the thoroughfare.

Aiello, who has lived on the corner of 231st Street and East Hampton Boulevard for nearly 40 years, awoke Saturday to find one of her trees demolished and snapped three-quarters of the way down and a large rock from her barrier wall next to the tree flung several feet from where it belongs.

A neighbor across the street heard a bang in the middle of the night and saw a car drive away from her property, she said. The severed tree lay in the street until the next morning when she found it.

“I’ve had cars come up on my lawn,” Aiello said. “I’m at my wit’s end.”

Aiello’s large corner lawn is graced with another, older tree stump, the result of a previous incident in which a driver clipped her property driving onto 231st Street. Her son’s van was also totaled a few years ago by another out-of-control vehicle.

“I’ve had it,” said Aiello, who is circulating a petition to submit to Community Board 11 requesting speed bumps on East Hampton Boulevard, a wide road bordering Alley Pond Park.

Drivers approaching a fork in the road at her intersection often get confused at the last minute and hit her property, she said.

The city Department of Transportation did not have a response by presstime.

Aiello also said stop signs at the intersection of 231st Street had been removed. She used to have wire iron hoops with roses protecting her property, but those got so badly damaged that she replaced them with a rapidly decimating wall of rocks.

“Everything is ruined,” she said.

One car knocked down a concrete deer on the lawn of Tony Smith two houses away before driving off, Smith said.

“It happens quite a bit,” he said. “They come down too fast on East Hampton. That’s the problem.”

“A speed bump would definitely help over there,” he said.

Reach reporter Ayala Ben-Yehuda by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or call 718-229-0300, Ext. 146.

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