ICBC is urging drivers and pedestrians to take extra care on the roads this fall, after statistics revealed 59 pedestrians are killed on BC roads every year between October and January.
Todd Stone, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, is also backing the ICBC’s #walksafeBC campaign to stop pedestrian deaths and injuries.
“Fall brings less daylight and weather changes including rain and fog, which means visibility can be poor this time of year,” said Stone in a release.
“Drivers need to be especially cautious at intersections and look out for pedestrians.”
On average, 2,300 pedestrians are injured in crashes around BC between October and January every year. About 70% of pedestrian crashes happen at intersections.
Chief Const. Neil Dubord, Chair of the BC Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Safety Committee, says drivers are often distracted.
“Drivers involved in crashes with pedestrians are often distracted or fail to yield the right of way,” said Dubord. “These behaviours are not only against the law, they’re simply unacceptable.”
But Dubord says pedestrians also have a part to play in keeping the streets safe.
“Pedestrians can help reduce their risk of being struck by obeying traffic signals in intersections and only crossing at designated crosswalks,” he said.
“Preventing these collisions is a shared responsibility. Please do your part to keep everyone safe on our roadways.”
Pedestrians are being asked to make themselves more visible drivers, by making eye contact, wearing bright clothing, and staying focused on the road, not on their phone.
ICBC will be distributing reflectors and safety tips through community policing volunteers across the province in areas with high volumes of pedestrian traffic.