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Sunday, June 23, 2024

Lowest death toll on Canadian roads in almost 60 years

Canadian Motor Vehicle Traffic Collision Statistics: 2008 Report

OTTAWA — Fewer people are dying and suffering injuries on Canadian roads every year. Transport Canada today released statistics that confirm the continuing decline in severe road collisions.

The Canadian Motor Vehicle Traffic Collision Statistics: 2008, published by Transport Canada, reveals that there were 12 per cent fewer deaths in 2008 than in the year before — the lowest death toll on Canadian roads in almost 60 years. The dramatic decline also positions Canada to achieve its goal of reducing fatalities by 30 per cent from the baseline period of 1996 to 2001, to the average from 1998 to 2010.

“Our government is committed to improving road safety and we have introduced important measures to reach that goal,” said the Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities. “The decline in deaths from road collisions is very encouraging, but the number of people affected is still too high. Everyone has a role to play for improving road safety. Canadians can take simple actions and decisions to make our roads safer.”

Most crashes are avoidable, so every action road users take will help prevent suffering and save lives. Road users can all do their part by keeping focused on the road, staying sober, wearing seatbelts and observing the speed limits.

The latest numbers show that in 2008 there were 2,419 road user fatalities, down from 2,761 the previous year. About 54 per cent of those who died were motor vehicle drivers, 20 per cent were passengers and 12 per cent were pedestrians.

The decline in road collision deaths and injuries is expected to continue. Transport Canada is confident that Road Safety Strategy 2015 will help improve safety on our roads, as will new safety standards and technologies such as electronic stability control (ESC) as they become more widely available. ESC is a proven technology that will in fact become mandatory on new vehicles sold in Canada effective September 1, 2011.

The motor vehicle traffic collision statistics are collected every year by all provinces and territories, and added to the National Collision Database by Transport Canada. Collisions involving casualties on public roads represent all those reported to, or by, the police. The department shares these statistics with the provinces and territories, and uses these statistics to further understand road safety issues and trends, with the goal of improving road safety for all Canadians.