Protective side guards for snowplows
The province says when it places its next order for snowplows 30 of them will be equipped with side guards to prevent pedestrians from rolling under the trucks.
Transportation Minister Trevor Taylor made the announcement March 31 in response to lobbying efforts of a mother who lost her daughter as a result of a snowplow accident.
“On December 19, 2005, 21year-old Jessica Holman-Price of St. John’s lost her life while preventing her 10-year-old brother from being crushed by the wheels of a snow-removal truck in Montreal,” Minister Taylor told the House of Assembly.
The siblings were standing on a snow bank waiting to cross the street at a busy intersec- tion.
“When the light turned green, the truck came around the corner and caught the edge of the mound, causing the boy to slide under the vehicle,” the Minister said.“Jessica reached for him but she too lost her footing and slid under the wheels of the truck. In a split second, she managed to push her brother out of harm’s way before the massive truck fatally injured her.”
The minister said he first met Jessica’s mother Jeanette, who lives in Portugal Cove-St. Phillip’s, in late January. Since the accident, she has been tirelessly lobbying to require all heavy trucks be equipped with side guards to prevent such fatalities.
“Her story touched me as I’m sure it touches all those who have heard it,” said Taylor.“Her determination and on-going effort to ensure some good comes from this tragedy is to be commended.”
The province will invest about $80,000 for the life-saving equipment for the trucks, which are expected by next spring. All future plow truck orders will also include the side guard stipulation.
Government is entering the fourth year of a five-year, $50 million plan to replace old snowplows.
“The side guards have been widely utilized in Europe for years and I encourage all governments in Canada and the private sector to adopt this policy as well for all types of delivery trucks,” the minister said.
To find out more about The Jessica Campaign visit: thejessicacampaign.com.