The Alberta RCMP is ringing in 2022 with tips and reminders around intersection safety. These busy, high-traffic areas require all road users to exercise caution and practice smart driving behaviours. Unsafe left turns, speeding, and violating traffic signals can all result in intersection collisions. Together, we can avoid these common errors and reduce safety risks.
In the Lakeland, there have been some horrific accidents at common intersections on Highway 28.
“According to the Government of Alberta, an average of 8,000 people are injured at intersections in Alberta every year. With various road users all travelling in different directions, these points of traffic require extra caution and attention,” says Supt. Gary Graham, Alberta RCMP Traffic Services. “We can reduce the risk of injury or collision by being familiar with, and following, the rules of the road.”
- Obey traffic signs and signals. Make a full stop at red lights and stop signs, even when turning right. Always follow directions given by police officers over traffic signs or signals (Government of Alberta, 2021).
- Yield to pedestrians at all marked or unmarked crosswalks. Before making a turn, ensure pedestrians have cleared the crosswalk.
- Remember the right of way rule. At a three and four-way stops, the vehicle that arrived first should proceed first. If two vehicles arrive at the same time, the vehicle on the right should proceed first (Government of Alberta, 2021).
- Use crosswalks and pedestrian-activated signals. If there are no crossing lights, wait until all vehicles have come to a complete stop before crossing (Government of Alberta, 2021).
- Stay alert. Remove headphones and put away cell phones or other electronic devices when crossing the street.
- Be seen. Make eye contact with drivers to ensure they see you. Extending your arm and pointing in the direction you wish to proceed shows drivers that you intend to enter a crosswalk. Wearing bright, reflective gear also helps motorists easily spot you in traffic.
Dan Heney is the Regional Fire Chief of the Bonnyville Regional Fire Authority (BRFA).
“People need to be approaching intersections cautiously and at much lower speeds than normal,” Regional Fire Chief Heney told Lakeland Connect. “The cold temps and packed snow make roads and street very icy right now and its pretty easy to slide right through the stop sign or red light if you’re carrying too much speed. We have seen multiple incidents in the last couple of weeks that were caused by people sliding through an intersection and hitting or getting hit by other vehicles.”
Give yourself lots of stopping distance and arrive alive.