October 22, 2015 by Canadian Underwriter
The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), B.C. Coroners Services, provincial government and police have teamed for the ICBC’s annual pedestrian safety campaign “as crashes involving pedestrians spike at this time of year.”
The ICBC launched its annual campaign on Wednesday, noting in a press release that almost two times more pedestrians are injured in crashes from November to January compared to June to August as the weather changes and daylight hours decrease.
In B.C., nearly one in five (18%) people killed in car crashes are pedestrians, according to ICBC data for crashes and injuries and police data for fatalities, based on five year averages from 2009 to 2013. In the Lower Mainland, 33 pedestrians are killed and 1,700 injured in crashes every year; on Vancouver Island, 10 pedestrians are killed and 330 pedestrians are injured in crashes every year; in the Southern Interior, 12 pedestrians are killed and 240 pedestrians are injured in crashes every year; and in northern B.C., 90 pedestrians are injured and four pedestrians are killed in crashes every year.
The ICBC reported in the press release that the top contributing factors attributed to drivers in crashes with pedestrians are distraction, failure to yield the right of way and weather. The ICBC recommends that drivers take extra time to look for pedestrians before turning, avoid distractions and be ready to yield, while pedestrians can help stay safe by making eye contact, wearing bright and reflective clothing and staying focused on the road.
ICBC’s campaign will feature new radio advertising aimed at drivers and transit advertising aimed at pedestrians in the highest pedestrian crash areas of the province, along with online digital advertising. The corporation is also distributing free safety reflectors and tips to pedestrians with the help of community policing volunteers and other local partners throughout B.C.
“It’s the fall, and that means the evenings get darker quicker, and we can expect more bad weather such as rain and fog, and more treacherous road conditions, such as ice and snow,” said Todd Stone, B.C.’s Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, in the press release.
Lindsay Matthews, ICBC’s director responsible for road safety, added that 75% of crashes involving pedestrians occur at intersection. “Drivers must be extremely cautious at intersections – take the extra time to look for pedestrians before turning, avoid all forms of distraction and be ready to yield. So whether driving or walking, everyone has a role to play to keep pedestrians from getting injured.”
Be a safe pedestrian (ICBC)
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