There are too many bad driv­ers

The Glengarry News - Glengarry Supplement - - News -

Bad driv­ing habits con­tinue to be lethal on On­tario high­ways.

That harsh re­al­ity is ham­mered home by the On­tario Pro­vin­cial Po­lice’s re­lease of 2016 traf­fic data, which re­vealed in­creases in many fa­tal­ity cat­e­gories, in­clud­ing the most tragic snow­mo­bile sea­son in 14 years.

The OPP is shar­ing the data pub­licly to raise aware­ness of the im­pact be­hav­iour had on the num­ber of deaths on On­tario roads, wa­ter­ways and trails.

A to­tal of 307 peo­ple were killed in mo­tor ve­hi­cle col­li­sions in 2016, mark­ing a four-year high. Per­sons Killed: 2016 -307 2015 - 301 2014 - 290 2013 - 293 Every year, with­out ex­cep­tion, the ma­jor­ity of the fa­tal­i­ties are at­trib­uted to the “Big Four.” They are ag­gres­sive, inat­ten­tive and im­paired driv­ing and fail­ure to wear seat­belts.

The “Big Four” were re­spon­si­ble for 165 (more than half) of last year's 307 deaths with lit­tle change over the pre­vi­ous year. Per­sons Killed 2016 - 307 2015 - 301 Per­sons Killed - speed-re­lated 2016 - 55 2015 - 63 Per­sons Killed - inat­ten­tivere­lated 2016 - 65 2015 - 68 Per­sons Killed - al­co­hol/drug re­lated 2016 - 45 2015 - 45

Col­li­sions

The OPP in­ves­ti­gated 67,372 mo­tor ve­hi­cle col­li­sions in 2016, down from 2015, when there were 69,934 col­li­sions.

Mark­ing an­other four-year high are the 275 col­li­sions that re­sulted in fa­tal­i­ties. Fa­tal Mo­tor Ve­hi­cle Col­li­sions 2016 - 275 2015 - 262 2014 - 268 2013 - 254 Of last year's crashes, 11,506 of them re­sulted in in­juries. The ma­jor­ity (55,591) were prop­erty dam­age col­li­sions with no in­juries sus­tained, but these col- li­sions came with a sig­nif­i­cant eco­nomic cost to On­tar­i­ans.

Large Com­mer­cial Trucks

Last year saw lit­tle change in col­li­sions in­volv­ing large com­mer­cial trans­port trucks. The data is an­other stark re­minder of the sig­nif­i­cantly greater threat these col­li­sions pose when com­pared to those in­volv­ing reg­u­lar­sized ve­hi­cles. Col­li­sions in­volv­ing trans­port trucks re­sulted in more than three times the num­ber of fa­tal­i­ties than those in­volv­ing reg­u­lar-sized ve­hi­cles – a statis­tic that holds steady from year to year. As was the case in 2015, the ma­jor­ity of those who died in last year's trans­port truck col­li­sions were oc­cu­pants of other in­volved ve­hi­cles. Many of these fa­tal­i­ties are at­trib­uted to the Big Four.

Col­li­sions In­volv­ing Large Com­mer­cial Trans­port Trucks

Num­ber of Col­li­sions 2016 - 5,357 2015 - 5,381 Num­ber of Fa­tal Col­li­sions 2016- 57 2015- 56 Per­sons Killed 2016 - 67 2015 - 71 Num­ber of Trans­port Truck Driv­ers Killed 2016 - 11 2015 - 10

Mo­tor­cy­clists

While last year marked fewer col­li­sions in­volv­ing mo­tor­cy­cles than in the pre­vi­ous year, there was lit­tle change in the num­ber of deaths.

The OPP re­sponded to 749 mo­tor­cy­cle crashes in 2016 which re­sulted in 33 fa­tal­i­ties. Speed­ing Speed­ing and los­ing con­trol con­tinue to be com­mon con­tribut­ing fac­tors. Mo­tor Ve­hi­cle Col­li­sions In­volv­ing Mo­tor­cy­cles Num­ber of Col­li­sions 2016 - 749 2015 - 837 Num­ber of Fa­tal Col­li­sions 2016 - 31 2015 - 27 Per­sons Killed 2016 - 33 2015 - 35 Mo­tor­cy­clists Killed 2016 - 31 2015-31 Mo­tor­cy­clists, Driv­ers 2016 - 28 2015 - 27

Sadly, 2016 marked the high­est num­ber of pedes­trian deaths in more than 12 years, with 39 deaths. There were 25 such deaths in 2015. The year 2009 was the last time the num­ber ex­ceeded 30.

Boaters/Pad­dlers

2016 marked the high­est num­ber of marine deaths in three years, with 23 peo­ple dy­ing in 19 in­ci­dents on OPP-pa­trolled wa­ter­ways. Seven of last year's fa­tal in­ci­dents in­volved non­mo­tor­ized ves­sels (e.g. ca­noes, kayaks).

Fall­ing over­board was the pri­mary cause in nine of the in­ci­dents. Cap­sized or swamped ves­sels were in­volved in seven of them and al­co­hol in eight of the in­ci­dents.

Every year, the ma­jor­ity of the vic­tims are found not wear­ing a Per­sonal Floata­tion De­vice (PFD). Last year, 19 of the 23 vic­tims found with no PFD and in 2015, all of the de­ceased were found with­out one.

Num­ber of Fa­tal Col­li­sions/ xxIn­ci­dents 2016- 19 2015 -16 Per­sons Killed 2016 -23 2015 - 18

HEED THE MES­SAGE: Dis­tracted driv­ing has be­come a lead­ing cause of high­way ac­ci­dents.

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