Kamloops: Highways Minister Todd Stone says results of a review of rural highway safety led government to raise the top speed on certain divided, multilane highways to 120 kilometres per hour from 110. A pilot project is also planned for sections of the Coquihalla Highway, Highway 1 between Sicamous and Revelstoke, and parts of the Sea-to-Sky Highway north of Vancouver, using reader boards to set variable speed limits that depend on road conditions.

This review was undertaken to assess four key aspects of road safety on rural highways, including the setting of appropriate speed limits, requirements for winter tires, keep right except to pass, and wildlife collisions.

As a result of the province wide Rural Highway Safety and Speed Review, changes that will help improve safety and mobility are coming to B.C.’s rural highways.

The number of serious crashes on provincial highways has decreased by 28% since 2003. This is the direct result of targeted and strategic enforcement, driver education, improved vehicle technology, and increased penalties.

Public consultation for the Rural Highway Safety and Speed Review took place from Nov. 29, 2013 to Jan. 24, 2014. Concurrently, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure conducted technical work, including research from other jurisdictions, and an engineering assessment of the speed, safety, design and land use for all of the individual highway segments identified for speed increases.