Darkness and rainy weather can combine to create deadly consequences for pedestrians

Rain and darkness can be a deadly combination

ICBC stats show nine out of 10 drivers worry about hitting a pedestrian at night, particularly in wet weather.

A survey released by ICBC has revealed that nine out of 10 drivers worry about hitting a pedestrian at night, particularly in wet weather.

At the same time, 8 out of 10 pedestrians don’t feel safe in these same conditions.

To help address the situation, the provincial government and police are launching a pedestrian safety campaign across the province to raise awareness of the dangers represented by the increased hours of darkness combined with reduced visibility due to our rainy winter.

“I cringe when I see see people, especially young people, dressed in dark colours with no reflective material whatsoever walking along the roadside on a rainy night. They seem unaware that they are making themselves very hard to see and that could lead to them being badly injured or even losing their life,” said Staff Sargent Jeff McArthur, Detachment Commander of the Sooke RCMP.

“There are all kinds of reflective safety gear out there these days and it only makes sense to wear it if you venture out on a dark, rainy night.”

READ MORE: Elderly man struck by vehicle in Aldergrove

That same message is part of the ICBC campaign after it statistics revealed a disproportionate number of pedestrian-related crashes and injuries happen in just four months of the year — 43 per cent of all crashes that injure pedestrians happen between October and January as visibility and conditions get worse.

Dark and rainy conditions can seriously impact visibility, and that’s why community policing volunteers will be handing our reflectors and safety tips in high pedestrian traffic areas across the province to help pedestrians stay visible.

READ MORE: Pedestrian complained about feeling ‘invisible’ in crosswalk

The other aspect of the safety equation is, of course, the behaviour of the drivers.

“Three-quarters of pedestrian crashes happen at intersections,” said Lindsay Matthews, ICBC’s director responsible for road safety. “Unfortunately, pedestrians are extremely vulnerable to be hurt when involved in a crash. These crashes contribute to the rising number of injury claims in our province, which is the largest single cost pressure on B.C. insurance rates, but the reality is, these crashes are preventable. We all need to do our part to keep our roads and pedestrians safe.”

Every year in B.C. an average of 59 pedestrians are killed and 2,500 are injured.

READ MORE: Surrey pedestrian killed after possible hit-and-run

“It’s important for drivers to slow down and be extra vigilant at this time of year,” said McArthur. “It’s a matter of assessing your own abilities as a driver and slowing down to the point where you are confident that you can pick up peripheral objects.”

For some drivers, added McArthur, that self assessment should result in deciding not to drive during certain conditions. For some older drivers who don’t feel confident after dark in the rain, or for drivers who’s vision may have deteriorated this may be a reasonable, responsible course of action.

Regional statistics

  • In the Lower Mainland, on average, 1,400 crashes at intersections involve a pedestrian every year.
  • On Vancouver Island, on average, 190 crashes at intersections involve a pedestrian every year.

Just Posted

Family, friends of Mission murder victim hold protest rally

Group wants convicted murderer Walter Ramsay sent back to a maximum security facility

Mission downs Abbotsford to open season

Roadrunners defeat Panthers 29-8 in 2018 home debut

Mission to celebrate culture during three-day event

Culture Days 2018 takes place Sept. 28-30

Vancouver Giants earn a weekend sweep against Everett

Langley-based hockey team plays its next game is at home on Friday, Sept. 28, against Seattle.

Abbotsford company among 500 fastest growing in Canada

Valley Carriers keeps spot on Growth 500 list, but drops from 398 last year to 408 this year

Ottawa area residents take stock of tornado rubble as Ford tours the ruins

A tornado on Friday afternoon tore roofs off of homes, overturned cars and felled power lines in the Ottawa community of Dunrobin and in Gatineau, Que.

Less than half of Metro Vancouverites feel they can influence government: study

SFU researchers suggest most people believe elected officials don’t care

Cap rent increases at inflation rate, B.C. task force recommends

MLAs say drop annual increase that would allow 4.5% rise next year

School, church and old mining site make Heritage BC’s 1st ever ‘watch list”

The list includes sites in need of protection to maintain B.C.’s culture and history

5 to start your day

Maple Ridge students send books to fire-destroyed school, teen stabbed in Surrey park and more

Yowza! Twerk, emoji and facepalm are added to Scrabble dictionary, OK?

Merriam-Webster has announced 300 new words have been added to the spelling game

LGBTQ activists, allies in Victoria counter anti-SOGI protest with rally of their own

Lower Mainland activists plan to protest SOGI on legislature lawn, Sept. 29

Three people attacked on Queensborough Bridge

Man in custody following incident occurred Sunday

Cities make power play for new fiscal order with eye to 2019 federal election

Trudeau ordered Champagne to talk with provinces and territories about ways to “address the timeliness of the flow of funds” to projects.

Most Read