​ICBC Cautions Drivers: Expect unpredictable road conditions this long weekend

Vancouver, BC (Oct. 2, 2018) – Every year, 380 children are injured in crashes while walking or cycling and six are killed throughout the province of British Columbia.* In B.C. school and playground zones, 86 children are injured every year.**

These figures are too high – and drivers and parents across the country need to help reduce the risk for children so they stay safe around our roadways.

With children returning to school next week, roads will be very busy. ICBC is asking drivers to give themselves extra travel time so they aren’t rushing and more likely to ­speed. Drivers should be completely focused on the road and be watching for children, especially in or around school zones.

Last year, 7,900 drivers were ticketed for speeding in school and playground zones in B.C. Police and Speed Watch volunteers will be closely monitoring drivers’ speeds in school zones to help children get a safe start to the school year.

Parents are encouraged to review ICBC’s tip sheet with their children and go over their daily route to and from school with them.

ICBC’s Drive Smart tips

  • Know your route. Weather is unpredictable and varies greatly at this time of year so check road and weather conditions before your trip at drivebc.ca.
  • Prepare your vehicle. With summer weather long over in parts of the province, make sure your vehicle’s seasonally prepared. It’s just as important to prepare your vehicle as it is to adjust your speed for the road conditions. Make sure your vehicle’s headlights and taillights are in working order, keep wiper fluid topped up for clearer visibility and don’t drive with badly worn or under-inflated tires.
  • Need winter tires? Winter tires are now required on many B.C. highways. Winter tires are labelled with either the mountain/snowflake symbol or the mud and snow designation (M&S). They must also be in good condition with a minimum tread depth of 3.5 mm.
  • Slow down. Posted speed limits are for ideal road conditions. When driving on snow, ice, slush or in rain or fog, slow down. Allow yourself at least twice the normal braking distance on wet or slippery roads and avoid driving through flooded or washed out roads.
  • Take a break from your phone. Let calls go to voicemail and ignore your notifications while driving. If you have to take a call, pull over when it’s safe to do so; stay focused on the road and keep the conversation brief. Make sure you’re focused on driving before re-entering traffic.

Regional statistics

  • In the Lower Mainland, 490 people are injured in 1,400 crashes over the Thanksgiving weekend.
  • On Vancouver Island, 78 people are injured in 280 crashes over the Thanksgiving weekend.
  • In the Southern Interior, 56 people are injured in 300 crashes over the Thanksgiving weekend.
  • In the North Central region, 18 people are injured in 140 crashes over the Thanksgiving weekend.

ICBC provides free road safety educational materials to B.C. schools to help students from kindergarten to grade 10 learn about road safety topics unique to their grade level using fun and interactive activities.

Notes about the data

Children defined as age five to 18. Pedestrian includes a person in or on a wheeled recreational device or wheeled toy. This includes rollerblades, a skateboard, scooter, unicycle or similar wheeled device.

* Crash and injury counts based on ICBC data (2013 to 2017); fatalities based on police data (2012 to 2016). Thanksgiving long weekend is calculated from 6 p.m. the Friday prior to the holiday to midnight Monday.

About the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia

The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia is a provincial Crown corporation established in 1973 to provide universal auto insurance to B.C. motorists. We’re also responsible for driver licensing, and vehicle licensing and registration.

SOURCE: Insurance Corporation of British Columbia

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