What are the real root causes for the increase in truck related crash deaths in Ontario?
If anyone could offer a definitive answer why the OPP have noticed a spike in crashes and deaths in wrecks involving commercial vehicles, they’d probably become a billionaire overnight.
There is an old saying: Figures don’t lie but liars can figure. Simply what it means is the statistics tell the truth, it’s the interpretations that are quite as clear. There are many mitigating factors to what the figures reveal but nobody goes that extra mile and asks the secondary questions to arrive at the right answer, they leave it to assumptions that will usually be incorrect. Incorrect for whatever purpose is politically expedient to explain it in whatever manner can be sold the easiest.
It’s been seven years since Ontario introduced distracting driving laws. Fewer people are dying in crashes related to distracted driving on Ontario highways.
It’s been more time than that since Ontario introduced speed limiters for commercial vehicles on the guise of safety. Safety for whom we’re not sure, but it levelled the playing field.
Now, suddenly the crashes involving transport trucks are killing more people. But where was the question about road rage? It isn’t and wasn’t asked. Truckers across the country, no, across the continent, have noticed a marked increase in them being victims of road rage, in which 2,500 pound cars think they can win in a crash with an 80,000 pound vehicle.
The OPP is out with new research that says fatal crashes with distraction as a contributing factor have dropped to the lowest number since 2009, when the laws were brought in.
On the other hand, the 71 people killed in crashes last year involving transport trucks was the highest number in the last 8 years.
In 2015, 299 people died on provincial roads, which is up by 11 deaths from last year — although the number of fatal crashes was down, overall.
When it comes to what Ontario police agencies call ‘The Big 4’ contributors that cause collisions; distracted driving, impaired driving, speed, and not wearing a seatbelt — every category of fatal crashes involving those factors saw a drop in the number of deaths in 2015.
The number of people killed in crashes related to drug or alcohol use was the lowest in more than 10 years.
The statistics just don’t tell the whole story and the story that’s being translated for public consumption isn’t making much sense either.