Avoid high-risk driving to stay safe this Canada Day long weekend

ICBC says bad driving habits affect everyone’s insurance rates

VANCOUVER, June 28, 2007 – The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) is encouraging drivers to help make the roads safer by using their RoadSense this Canada Day long weekend. According to the five-year average (2002-2006), two people die and 161 people are injured in 574 crashes on Canada Day. These crashes cost ICBC and its customers more than $4.4 million in claims costs.

“Year after year, speeding is the top contributing factor in all fatal collisions. By simply slowing down, we can reduce crashes and save lives,” said Solicitor General John Les. “To help get this message across, police will be out on B.C. roads this weekend ticketing drivers who engage in high-risk driving behaviours.”

Many motorists will admit to occasionally engaging in high-risk driving behaviours, such as following too closely, or not stopping completely at stop signs, but research shows that most of these drivers do not usually consider themselves as a high-risk driver. There is a strong link between high-risk driving behaviour and crashes. Excessive speed, failing to yield, improper passing, following too close, and running red lights or stop signs caused 45 per cent of automobile-related deaths on our roads in 2005.

If you are travelling this weekend, remember the following safety tips:

  • Avoid high-risk driving behaviours, practice courtesy and set an example for other drivers.
  • Slow down and maintain a safe traveling speed between your vehicle and the one in front.
  • Warmer weather can encourage motorcyclists and bicyclists to get out on the road. Remember to use extra caution, share the road, and keep a look out for these other road users.
  • Prior to road trips, remember to check the condition of your vehicle to ensure it is properly equipped for longer drives. Inspect all tires, including the spare, making sure they are in good condition and properly inflated and ensure all necessary fluids are topped up.

If you are involved in a crash and need to file a claim, ICBC’s Dial-A-Claim service is open 24 hours a day, including holidays. In the Lower Mainland, you can call 604-520-8222; for the rest of B.C., call 1-800-910-4222, or you can also file your claim online at http://www.icbc.com.

For more information on ICBC’s high-risk driving campaign, visit http://www.icbc.com/road_safety/crash_location.asp.