Number of serious collisions in Hamilton going down: report

 

The number of serious-injury collisions in the City of Hamilton has seen a reduction of approximately 20 per cent over the last five years.

In a report delivered to the Public Works Committee on Monday (Dec. 2), data shows that while the number of overall collisions has gone up, the number of juries and fatalities has gone down. The data is reflected up to 2018.

In 2014, there were 1,831 injury collisions and 16 fatalities. In 2018, those numbers were 1,551 and 11, respectively.

There was a spike in fatalities in 2017, when it was back up to 16, but for the most part, the number has trended downwards.

In February 2019, the Public Works Committee approved the Hamilton Strategic Road Safety Program and Vision Zero Action Plan and part of the initiative is to collect collision data annually, the report says.

The uptick in the number of collisions is due to population increase.

"The decreasing trend in injury collision corresponds with the initiation of the Hamilton Strategic Road Safety Program, the implementation of various collision reduction safety measures and roadway safety education campaigns," the report says.

Edward Soldo, Hamilton's Director, Transportation Operations & Maintenance Public Works Department, touted the 20 per cent reduction in injuries as pretty significant.

"Most municipalities' numbers remain static," he said. "[It shows] the benefits of a robust Vision Zero strategy."

Soldo points to Hamilton's red-light camera program as having helped to greatly reduce the number of serious collisions across the city.

"There has been a 53 per cent reduction in right-angle collisions and 69 per cent reduction in injury/fatal collisions at RLC locations in the past three years compared to the three years prior to initiation of the program," the report says.

Some interesting statistics from 2018 in the report include:

  • Collisions occurred most frequently on a Friday;
  • The hour with the highest number of total collisions was 5-6 p.m.;
  • Months with the highest number of total collisions were January and November;
  • The most common collision type was a rear-end motor collision and most frequent driver action was lost control, and;
  • There were 1,159 motorists between the ages of 21 and 30 that were involved in collisions, followed by 1,059 (31-40), 957 (51-60) and 883 (41-50).

In 2018, fatal collision statistics show:

  • 18 per cent (2) of fatal collisions occurred on rural roadways and 82 per cent (9) occurred on urban roadways;
  • 18 per cent (2) of fatal collisions were cyclist collisions; one involved an impaired cyclist and the other involved a cyclist colliding with a turning truck;
  • 27per cent (3) of fatal collisions involved pedestrians;
  • 45 per cent (5) occurred within an intersection and 55 per cent (6) occurred at midblock locations;
  • Nine per cent (1) of fatal collisions occurred when it was raining and 91 per cent (10) during clear weather;
  • 27 per cent (3) occurred during wet road conditions and 73 per cent (8) on dry roadways;
  • Nine per cent (1) of fatal collisions involved a single motor vehicle, nine per cent (1) occurred during a head-on collision, 27 per cent (3) were pedestrian/vehicle collisions, 45 per cent (5) involved turning vehicles (two of the five were cyclist fatalities) and nine per cent (1) was the result of a rear-end collision; and
  • Nine per cent (1) occurred when the driver lost control of the vehicle, nine per cent (1) when the driver disobeyed traffic control, 18 per cent (2) when the drivers failed to yield the right-of-way, and 27 per cent (3) when drivers were exceeding the speed limit or driving too quickly for the conditions.

The numbers on the LINC and the Red Hill Valley Parkway (RHVP), show there's been an upward trend in the total number of collisions on the LINC (32 per cent) and RHVP (100 per cent) over the past five years, the report says,

However, this can be attributed to the increase in the number of self-reported collisions on the LINC (86 per cent) and RHVP (208 per cent) which are of low severity and do not involve personal injuries, the report notes.

Most of the collisions on the LINC occurred under dry roadway conditions (80 per cent) while the majority of collisions on the RHVP occurred under wet roadway conditions (64 per cent).

Since 2014, the LINC has seen 182 collisions resulting in injury, and the Red Hill that number is 202. The number of fatalities on the LINC and Red Hill since 2014 is 2 and 4 respectively.

Since the data was collected, however, there has been a speed reduction and resurfacing of the Red Hill. Soldo told the committee that statistics related to before and after those road upgrades will be contained and highlighted in next year's collision report.

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