Police focusing on intersection safety in January
Jan. 2, 2015
SGI and its law enforcement partners are continuing with month-long traffic safety focuses for 2015. In January, the province-wide focus is on intersection safety.
“Intersection collisions have increased year-over-year. Too many people are being hurt and killed on Saskatchewan roads and it needs to stop,” said Andrew Cartmell, President and CEO of SGI. “For the New Year, resolve to drive better. Drive safer. For you, your family, and everyone else on the road.”
Nearly 40 per cent of Saskatchewan crashes happen at intersections1. The most common contributing factors are inattentiveness, failing to yield, driving too fast for road conditions, following too closely and disobeying traffic lights.
“SGI encourages drivers to plan ahead, and build in a bit more travel time to avoid that temptation to rush through an intersection,” Cartmell said.
Collisions at intersections have a high risk of serious injuries or even death, making intersection safety a priority for enforcement. The collisions at intersections that can be most dangerous are a result of a driver turning left into on-coming traffic, or collisions at a right angle. Vehicles travelling in the same direction can also collide when one is following too closely and rear-ends the vehicle in front of them, or a driver doesn’t see a vehicle next to them and side-swipes it.
In 2013, there were more than 11,000 collisions at intersections across the province, resulting in 47 deaths and injuring more than 3,500 people.
Road users can prevent collisions at intersections by following the basic steps of IPDE:
- Identify real and potential hazards when approaching an intersection by scanning the intersection well in advance, checking crosswalks, checking your blind spots and keeping an eye out for traffic that may be coming from blocks ahead.
- Predict what will happen should you encounter a real or potential hazard. If a vehicle suddenly stopped in front of you, could you stop without rear-ending it? Could you quickly change lanes without side-swiping another vehicle?
- Decide exactly what you would do to drive safely and deal with the hazard.
- Execute that decision - follow through.
During the winter months, remember to slow down as you approach intersections, even if you have the right of way, in case other vehicles aren’t able to stop. Keep a safe following distance and give yourself extra time to stop so you have some leeway when driving conditions are slippery.
In consultation with its law enforcement partners, SGI has developed a calendar outlining the traffic safety focus for each month in 2015 (pdf, 227 kb).
Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) is the province's self-sustaining auto insurance fund. SGI operates 21 claims centres and five salvage centres across Saskatchewan with a head office in Regina. SGI also works with a network of nearly 400 motor licence issuers across the province. Customers can now do some transactions online. Look for the MySGI link under Online Services on your motor licence issuer's website or SGI's website.