Quick Scan

Canadian Road Safety News Digest – December 1-31, 2019

February 11, 2020   |   Categories: Quick Scan

Last Updated on February 11, 2020

Impaired driving in B.C. is still a deadly problem despite more deterrents than ever

December 29, 2019, CBC News (VANCOUVER, B.C.)

Jeremy Cook is asking you not to drive impaired this holiday season.

The 22-year-old Nanaimo man was in a car that was struck by a drunk driver in 2013, when he was just about to turn 16. His life has not been the same since.

"I've had to relearn how to walk and everything," he said about his injuries, which included broken bones, eye damage and a traumatic brain injury.

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Poll on drug-impaired driving suggests more education needed, CAA says

December 27, 2019, National Post (OTTAWA, ONTARIO)

Newly released polling data about drug-impaired driving suggests more needs to be done to raise awareness of the dangers of getting behind the wheel while high.

The results from the Canadian Automobile Association found that just over one-fifth of all respondents in the online survey said they had either driven after consuming cannabis or rode in a car with someone who had.

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How Surrey is making dangerous intersections safer for pedestrians

December 26, 2019, CBC News (SURREY, B.C.)

For about a year, Surrey has been experimenting with new technology called Leading Pedestrian Intervals, or PDIs, to make its intersections safer.

At about 70 crossings in the city, when pedestrians get a walk signal they are given a seven-second head start to cross the street while the light remains red for drivers.

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Year-end poll shows Canadians are drinking and driving less

December 26, 2019, KelownaNow (KELOWNA, B.C.)

Ipsos polling has released the results of their annual year end surveys that cover a variety of topics.

In one of a dozen polls, Canadians were asked whether they have at some point in their life driven a vehicle while impaired by alcohol or marijuana.

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Progress to reduce drinking and driving in Canada slowing down: poll

December 20, 2019, TIRF (OTTAWA, ONTARIO)

The Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) announces the release of a new fact sheet, Road Safety Monitor 2019: Drinking & Driving Attitudes and Practices in Canada, which summarizes findings on self-reported drinking and driving in Canada. This fact sheet is based on the Road Safety Monitor (RSM) 2019 poll conducted by TIRF, in partnership with Beer Canada and Desjardins. The results show progress to reduce drinking and driving in Canada is slowing down.

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Redesigned grant program to boost active transportation

December 19, 2019, Government of B.C. (VICTORIA, B.C.)

An expanded Active Transportation Grant Program is accepting proposals to build safer, more accessible and convenient active transportation infrastructure.

“British Columbians shared their strong desire to live in communities where active transportation is a safe and efficient option,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “This grant program is designed to meet the needs of rural and urban communities, so people of all ages and abilities can benefit from better connections between neighbourhoods, schools, work offices, transit stations and town centres.”

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Stricter sanctions for impaired driving now in effect

December 16, 2019, CBC News (WINNIPEG, MANITOBA)

Stiffer fines, mandatory ignition locks and more vehicle impoundment are some of the new sanctions impaired drivers in Manitoba will face starting Monday.

Immediate roadside prohibition, as the Manitoba government calls the initiative, sanctions drivers who register a "warn" level on a screening test, while providing an alternative to the court process for those who fail or refuse a breathalyzer, the province says.

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Canadian bike lane study confirms what cyclists already know

December 13, 2019, Cycling Magazine (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

A new study out of Toronto has examined the safety effects of newly added cycle tracks in the downtown core. To the shock of no one, the results are overwhelmingly positive, even including some unexpected benefits.

When dealing with cycling traffic, most major Canadian cities employ two solutions. The first, bike lanes, are divisions painted on the road…

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VPD urges all road users to 'slow down ... be cognizant of each other' to reduce pedestrian injuries

December 12, 2019, CBC News (VANCOUVER, B.C.)

…Raheem Dilgir, director of the Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals, says enforcement could be expanded but automated methods can help make crossings safer.

"Safety cameras that are in place at many intersections in Metro Vancouver are intended to do just that," said Dilgir on The Early Edition.

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City of Vancouver partners with MADD Canada and Preventable to keep roads safe

December 12, 2019, Voice Online (VANCOUVER, B.C.)

WITH the holiday season now upon us the City of Vancouver says it wants to ensure everyone knows how to plan ahead and get home safely.

Together with MADD Canada and Preventable, the City is rolling out an awareness campaign across 35 busy EasyPark lots encouraging impaired individuals to leave their car parked overnight and choose an alternate way home. In most City-owned lots, residents can extend their overnight parking until 6 p.m. the next day. At most of the City’s on-street parking, cars can be parked until 11 a.m. the next day.

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New DriveBC webcams help travellers ‘know before they go’

December 12, 2019, Government of B.C. (VICTORIA, B.C.)

People can better prepare for their travels thanks to the 30 new cameras and 71 more views added to the DriveBC webcam network in 2019.

New cameras are installed during the year at locations throughout B.C. to support drivers and road operators in planning for traffic and weather conditions on the route ahead…

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Ontario Invests in Police Services to Keep Impaired Drivers Off the Road

December 9, 2019, Government of Ontario (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

Ontario is investing approximately $2.4 million in funding through its Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere (RIDE) Grant to help police services across the province detect impaired drivers and keep our streets and highways safe.

172 police services will receive the funding they need to carry out this vital road safety mission throughout the year.

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National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day in N.B.

December 7, 2019, CTV News (FREDERICTON, N.B.)

Saturday marked National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day in Canada – a day when police across the country make a concerted effort to ensure impaired drivers stay off of roads. With the arrival of the Holiday, police say it’s the only way to help keep roads safer.

Statistics revealed by RCMP say at least 19 people died in New Brunswick in 2018 as a result of impaired driving.

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Driver assist technology: is it really just another distraction?

December 6, 2019, Canadian Underwriter (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

Vehicle safety technology may actually be contributing to distracted driving, although that’s likely to be a short-term trend, says Michel Martineau, vice president of claims at Desjardins Insurance.

“I think people have a high degree of confidence in safety features that can maybe lead them to be not as aware of their surroundings and as careful with driving,” Martineau told Canadian Underwriter. “It’s more difficult for us to evaluate, because we can’t track it, but it is something that can happen.”

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Fewer inspections keep unsafe commercial vehicles on Ontario's roads: auditor

December 6, 2019, CTV News (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

As many as 10,000 unsafe commercial vehicles have been allowed to operate on Ontario's roads because of a drop in the number of government inspections, the province's auditor general said this week in her annual report.  Bonnie Lysyk said 89,000 commercial trucks and buses were inspected last year, down from 113,000 in 2014. She called the 22 per cent decrease is a "missed opportunity" to prevent injuries and improve road safety

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Canadian stats on impaired driving deaths incomplete, years out of date

December 5, 2019, CBC News (VICTORIA, B.C.)

Canada's statistics on impaired and distracted driving fatalities, as well as drowning deaths, are incomplete and years out of date because the BC Coroners Service has repeatedly failed to share its data with the agencies that compile the national numbers.

A CBC News investigation has determined that the information gap, which in some cases stretches back almost a decade, has held up the publication of annual reports and caused safety organizations to guess at countrywide trends and put asterisks next to their findings…

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Drop the blame game to improve pedestrian safety in Metro Vancouver, say experts

December 4, 2019, CBC News (VANCOUVER, B.C.)

…Experts say action must be taken to improve road safety at dangerous intersections before more lives are lost.

Raheem Dilgir, director of the Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals, says it's time for drivers, pedestrians and cyclists to stop blaming each other and for road planners to design infrastructure that helps reduce the number of collisions.

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New road safety plan to reduce traffic deaths falls short, Ottawa road users argue

December 4, 2019, Global News (OTTAWA, ONTARIO)

Reducing the average rate of traffic deaths and collisions causing serious injuries each year by 20 per cent over the next five years isn’t an ambitious enough goal for the national capital, community leaders and residents told Ottawa councillors on Wednesday.

A number of people who use Ottawa’s roads lamented that the City of Ottawa isn’t adopting ‘Vision Zero’ – a program that aims to eliminate all traffic fatalities and severe injuries – in its new road safety action plan for 2020-2024.

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Montreal’s pedestrian death toll is higher than homicide rate for 2019

December 3, 2019, Driving.ca (MONTREAL, QUEBEC)

The number of pedestrians killed on the streets of Montreal in 2019 has quietly climbed to a 10-year high of 20.

The woman struck at the corner of Somerled Ave. and Mariette St. in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce in October has succumbed to her injuries, despite the heroic efforts of bystanders to lift the car she was trapped under. Montreal Police spokesperson Caroline Chevrefils confirmed the latest death on Monday.

And we’re not out of the woods yet. Two lives hang in the balance with a month to go in this bloody year.

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Quebec’s mandatory-breathalyzer law for repeat drunk drivers is smart policy

December 3, 2019, The Globe and Mail (QUEBEC CITY, QUEBEC)

Drunk driving is an ironic crime. It’s as preventable as it is lethal. It’s simple. If you’re impaired, don’t drive.

Despite this fact, drunk drivers remain responsible for thousands of deaths each year. Though drunk driving has declined over the last two decades due to increased public awareness and effective policing, each day approximately four Canadians are killed and 175 injured in crashes involving impaired drivers.  Quebec may have an answer….

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Toronto police to gain 300 officers — eight of them watching traffic safety — under proposed budget

December 2, 2019, The Star (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

The proposed Toronto police budget would see nearly 300 additional police officers patrolling Toronto’s streets by 2021, a complement the force says is necessary to expand community-policing and traffic-enforcement initiatives and respond to a growing number of emergency calls.

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Ontario government clears way for municipalities to install speed cameras on local roads

December 2, 2019, Global News (TORONTO, ONTARIO)

The Ontario government is now allowing municipalities to install automated speed enforcement cameras on local roads in an effort to improve road safety.

“The province has filed enabling regulations under the Safer School Zones Act that will give municipalities the ability to adopt new and enhanced tools to promote safety in school zones and community safety zones,” Barbara Mottram, a spokesperson for Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney, told Global News in a statement Monday evening.

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Phone-detecting cameras deployed in Australia to curb distracted driving

December 1, 2019, Global News (MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA)

The Australian state of New South Wales, home to the country’s largest city Sydney, rolled out mobile phone detection cameras on Sunday, hoping to cut the number of fatalities on its roads by a third over two years, transport authorities said.

The mobile phone detection program, one of the first in the world, involves cameras operating day and night in all weather conditions to determine if a driver is handling a mobile phone, according to Transport for NSW, which manages the state’s transport services.

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Canadian Events & Conferences in 2020

Ontario Road Safety Forum – 7th

Toronto, Ontario

April 30, 2020

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CCMTA Annual Meeting

Charlottetown, PEI

May 31-June 3, 2020

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CARSP/PRI 2020 Joint Conference

Montreal, Quebec

June 15-18, 2020

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6th International Symposium on Highway Geometric Design

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

June 28-July 1, 2020

Learn more…