Canadian Underwriter

ICBC helps launch pedestrian safety campaign as crashes “spike at this time of year”

October 18, 2016   by Canadian Underwriter

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The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) has launched a pedestrian safety campaign with the provincial government and police to urge pedestrians and drivers to stay safe as “crashes involving pedestrians spike at this time of year.”

dangerous crossingOn average, 59 pedestrians are killed and 2,300 injured in crashes every year in B.C., with almost half of these fatalities (46%) occurring between October and January, ICBC said in a press release.

The crash and injury statistics from ICBC data are based on a five-year average from 2011 to 2015; fatality statistics from police data are based on the same five-year average. Regionally, in the Lower Mainland, on average, 1,600 pedestrians are injured in 2,200 crashes every year. On Vancouver Island, on average, 290 pedestrians are injured in 380 crashes every year. In the Southern Interior, on average, 230 pedestrians are injured in 290 crashes every year. And in Northern B.C., on average, 70 pedestrians are injured in 92 crashes every year.

According to ICBC, about 70% of pedestrian crashes occur at intersections. However, since 1999, ICBC, the B.C. government and police have joined forces for the intersection safety camera program, which involves cameras being set up at 140 of the highest-risk intersections in 26 communities across the province.

This year’s pedestrian safety campaign will feature radio advertising aimed at drivers and transit advertising aimed at pedestrians in the highest pedestrian crash areas of the province, along with online advertising.

For their part, ICBC said in the release, pedestrians can help stay safe by making eye contact, wearing bright and reflective clothing, and staying focused on the road. ICBC will be distributing reflectors and safety tips through community policing volunteers across the province in areas with high volumes of pedestrian traffic.

“Fall brings less daylight and weather changes, including rain and fog, which means visibility can be poor this time of year,” said Todd Stone, B.C.’s Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, in the release. “Drivers need to be especially cautious at intersections and look out for pedestrians. As pedestrians, it’s critical we do what we can to be seen by drivers.”

Chief Constable Neil Dubord, chair of the B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Safety Committee, noted that drivers involved in crashes with pedestrians are often distracted or fail to yield the right of way. “These behaviours are not only against the law, they’re simply unacceptable,” he said.

Be a safe pedestrian (ICBC)

Be a safe pedestrian (infographic) ICBC

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1 Comment » for ICBC helps launch pedestrian safety campaign as crashes “spike at this time of year”
  1. Colin Smith says:

    I’m sorry – just what exactly is this meant to achieve? Are you posting a similar campaign aimed at drivers telling them to use their side lights, buy cars in brighter colours, and make eye contact with pedestrians?

    What next? Pedestrian Insurance Policies?

    Yes, a healthy awareness of proper roadside behaviour is a good grounding – and should be being taught from day one in schools – but if a car hits a person (usually during the darkest months of the year, at the end of the working week, and during rush hour according to you figures – usually due to driver distraction, driver failure to yield, or weather conditions) then I’d politely suggest that the issue isn’t going to be resolved by defensive walking… just like defensive cycling or defensive motorbike riding will solve anything.

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