On average, 59 pedestrians are killed and 2,300 injured in crashes every year in B.C., with almost half of these fatalities (46 per cent) occurring between October and January.
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.
Through ICBC’s road improvement program, over 100 pedestrian and cyclist related projects were completed last year including crosswalks, sidewalks, countdown timers and pedestrian activated flashing crosswalks.
About 70 per cent of pedestrian crashes happen at intersections. The intersection safety camera program, a partnership between ICBC, the B.C. government and police since 1999, has cameras set up at 140 of the highest-risk intersections in 26 communities across the province. It’s one of the many enforcement, education and awareness tactics used to improve pedestrian safety.
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.
Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure said: “Fall brings less daylight and weather changes including rain and fog, which means visibility can be poor this time of year,” said Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “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.”
Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety & Solicitor General said: “One in five people killed in car crashes are pedestrians,” said Mike Morris, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “Pedestrians need to watch for drivers turning left at intersections, as they may be focused on oncoming traffic. Remove your headphones and leave your phone alone while crossing the road.”
Chief Constable Neil Dubord, Chair of the B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Safety Committee said: “Drivers involved in crashes with pedestrians are often distracted or fail to yield the right of way,” said Chief Constable Neil Dubord, Chair of the B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Safety Committee. “These behaviours are not only against the law, they’re simply unacceptable. Pedestrians can help reduce their risk of being struck by obeying traffic signals in intersections and only crossing at designated crosswalks. Wearing reflective clothing and not being distracted by your cell phone may also be helpful in reducing your risk. Preventing these collisions is a shared responsibility. Please do your part to keep everyone safe on our roadways.”
Lindsay Matthews, ICBC’s director responsible for road safety said: “We’re urging both pedestrians and drivers to do their part to keep our roads safe this time of year,” said Lindsay Matthews, ICBC’s director responsible for road safety. “About 70 per cent of pedestrian crashes happen at intersections, and while there are cameras at 140 intersections across B.C., it’s important for drivers to slow down every time and for pedestrians to stay focused on what’s going on around them.”