Injuries suffered by two Sidney women in their 80s underscores many of the broader pedestrian safety issues seen across the province. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Sidney crash involving seniors underscores pedestrian safety issues

Sunday’s collision includes many of the main factors in crashes involving pedestrians

Injuries suffered by two Sidney seniors after a vehicle struck them while crossing a road on a dark November night underscores several broad aspects concerning pedestrian safety.

Const. Meighan Massey of the Sidney/North Saanich RCMP said the women involved in Sunday’s crash were lucky to have suffered only minor injuries.

According to ICBC, almost one in five people killed in motor vehicle incidents are pedestrians, with some 2,700 pedestrians suffering injuries, on average every year. ICBC recorded 42 pedestrian fatalities in 2017 across British Columbia including three on Vancouver Island. Two recent fatal crashes involving pedestrians involved a 68-year-old North Saanich resident and a 62-year-old Saanich woman.

More than three out of four crashes involving pedestrians happen at intersections, according to ICBC. Sunday’s crash happened in a marked crosswalk at the corner of 3rd Street and Sidney Avenue. The two women, aged 87 and 88, had just finished watching a moviewhen a vehicle driven by a 60-year-old Saanich man struck them. One of the women received treatment on-site for what Sidney/North Saanich RCMP called minor injuries, while the other received treatment at a local hospital before being released.

RELATED: Two Sidney seniors struck by vehicle with foggy windows in marked crosswalk

Crashes involving pedestrians, according to ICBC, most often happen in the fall and winter months – October through January.

Darkness was also considered a factor in Sunday’s crash, although it happened outside the hours when ICBC typically sees crashes involving pedestrians. Those hours are between 3 and 6 p.m., which can be after dark in the winter months.

Sunday’s crash also highlighted one of the central contributing factors to the crashes involving pedestrians — failure of drivers to yield right of way — as the Sidney/North Saanich RCMP issued a ticket against the driver for failing to yield to pedestrians in a crosswalk.

Police also noted foggy windows may have been a contributing factor in Sunday’s crash and the driver was also issued a fine for operating a vehicle with limited visibility.

RELATED: Pedestrian hit by car Sunday in North Saanich dies of his injuries

Sidney/North Saanich RCMP recently prepared a video highlighting some ways both drivers and pedestrians can ensure safety.

Colleen Woodger, road safety coordinator with ICBC, said drivers should remain focused on the road, forego use of their personal devices, and yield to pedestrians, “especially when turning at intersections and transit stops.”

Const. Paul Mittelsteadt added pedestrians can do their part by using marked crosswalks, making eye contact with drivers, and wearing reflective clothing.

RELATED: UPDATE: Roads reopen after pedestrian struck in Saanich

Broadly, the crash also draws attention to age-friendly urban design as the women were in their late 80s. As Canadian society ages, urban designers have called for measures that respond and recognize changing demographics, an issue of some importance to the Saanich Peninsula generally and Sidney specifically, as one of the oldest communities in the region.

In a 2018 report titled Zero to 100: Planning for an Aging Population, prepared for the Capital Regional District, Sidney-based urban planner Kristin Agnello spells out a number of recommendations to improve sidewalks and pathways, including sufficient pedestrians crossings that are safe for people for different levels and types of disability, with non-slip markings, visual and audio cues, and adequate crossing times.


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Just Posted

Trees topped, greenery snatched from Saanich park

‘If everyone took one thing, there’d be nothing left,’ says president of park society

New Saanich resident says volunteers get back as much as they give

Saanich Volunteers Services Society member encourages others to help the community

West Shore Parks and Rec offers holiday childcare alternatives

Camps available on days many daycares close

‘Norovirus-like’ outbreak interrupts Bantam hockey showcase in Greater Victoria

Several athletes were sent home, quarantined on the ferry

VIDEO: Boys help rescue Cariboo bear cub

The cub, weighing just 24lbs, has been taken to wildlife sanctuary in Northwest B.C. for the winter

Greater Victoria 2019 holiday craft fair roundup

Get a jump on your holiday shopping

B.C.-born hockey official talks to IIHF about switching European rule book to NHL rules

Rob Shick will represent NHL at 4th World Hockey Forum in Russia

Miller nets winner as Canucks edge Sabres 6-5 in OT

Roussel, Leivo tally two apiece for Vancouver

$578: that’s how much your first distracted driving ticket will cost with recent premium hikes

Over 50 per cent of Canadians admitted to using phone while driving last year, according to study

Kelowna man attempts to steal bait bike from RCMP parking lot

38-year-old Brian Richard Harbison is facing several charges

‘Things haven’t changed enough:’ Ecole Polytechnique anniversary prompts reflection

Fourteen women were fatally shot by a gunman at the Montreal school on Dec. 6, 1989

Bear raids freezer, gorges on Island family’s Christmas baking

Hungry bruin virtually ignored meat and fish, focused, instead, on the sweets

Most Read