Is it really worth the risk?Tuesday, May 13, 2014 by: SooToday.com Staff
SAULT STE MARIE
The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police (CACP) announce the commencement of Canada Road Safety Week-a collaborative effort by police services across Canada to target high risk driving behaviours that puts drivers and others at risk.
This campaign runs between Tuesday, May 13 and Monday, May 19, 2014.
It is up to all of us to drive in a manner that ensures our roads are as safe as they can be.
The Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police and the men and women of law enforcement are taking part in Canada Road Safety Week in an effort to save lives and reduce injuries on the our roads, said Vancouver Police Chief Jim Chu, President of the CACP.
When Canadians drive safely, they arrive safely and don’t we all want that?
Police Services will target the Big 4 Killers on our roads, namely, impaired operation by alcohol or drug, failure or improper use of seatbelts, distracted driving and aggressive driving.
-In 2011, the number of motor vehicle fatalities was 2,006 and 22 percent of motor vehicle driver fatalities were 15 to 24 years old
-Economic losses caused by traffic collision-related health care costs and lost productivity are at least $10 billion annually. That is about 1 percent of Canada’s GDP
-Impaired driving is the leading cause of criminal death in Canada
-MADD Canada estimates there are somewhere between 1,250 and 1,500 impairment-related crash deaths in Canada each year. This is 3.4 to 4.1 deaths per day.
-in 2011, 31 percent of driver fatalities are a result of a driver not wearing seatbelts. In addition, 34 percent of passenger fatalities are a result of passenger’s not wearing a seatbelt
-Driver distraction is a factor in about 4 million motor vehicle crashes in North America each year
-40 percent of speeding drivers involved in fatal crashes were 16 to 24 years of age
Powerwise 5/13/2014 7:37:52 PM Report
It's kind of difficult to target texters if they're doing it behind the pitch-black tinted windows our cops refuse to take care of.
Otto1 5/13/2014 8:02:23 PM Report
99% of "aggressive" driving would be eliminated if the police would enforce "keep right except to pass".
deanoo28 5/13/2014 8:06:20 PM Report
unfortunately some of the police are the worst offenders
Sammy1099 5/13/2014 8:28:52 PM Report
"99% of "aggressive" driving would be eliminated if the police would enforce "keep right except to pass". "
Yea I noticed that too. I’ve lived traveled all over Europe and Ontario and this town has the worst drivers I’ve seen. Maybe Rome is as bad I guess, but even there it was distracted drivers. Here it seems to be blithering idiot drivers.
You are driving a car, SUV or half ton you do not need to take a wide turn like 18 wheelers do. They have dedicated lanes for turning, try using them instead of holding up traffic. Even if there isn’t a dedicated turning lane you pull as far to the left as possible so people can at least go around you. On four lanes if you drive side by side down the road it kind of defeats the purpose behind four lanes. The outside lane is for faster traffic, if you see a line of cars behind you pull into the inside lane and let them pass. When you pull out in front of me I assume you are in a hurry because you couldn’t wait 5 secs for me to clear the intersection, typically no-one is behind me. Yet you pull in front and do 10km/hr WTF?
ThinkAgain 5/13/2014 8:37:47 PM Report
Ages 15-24, maybe they should rethink the requirements to get a drivers licence.It must not be working if the risk group is that of a new licence driver.
Ski-Dude 5/13/2014 9:22:45 PM Report
Hasn't this age group always been the poor statistic? I just wish, that being over 25, my insurance premiums weren't geared to it!
Sam C 5/13/2014 9:31:47 PM Report
Sammy... just a clarification... yes, the left lane is for "faster" traffic, but... that doesn't mean that someone who is late for work or otherwise in a hurry can go 20- or 30 km/h OVER the speed limit, and expect people to stay out of their way.
You can't expect one law to be enforced (keep right except to pass) and not have another (the speed limit) enforced, as well.
Powerwise 5/13/2014 9:47:37 PM Report
To Sam C:
Speed limits enforced in Sault Ste. Marie?
thumbs4208 5/13/2014 10:14:46 PM Report
i"m so glad i'm not the only one who feels this way of ssm drivers
old-cat33 5/13/2014 10:19:40 PM Report
I don't know guys but I think Sudbury has worse drivers. Never had trouble here when you want to cut into traffic like coming out of Timmies on McNabb St. They always let me in and I do the same when Im heading that way.
awesome1 5/13/2014 10:48:25 PM Report
oh,,, belive me when i say it is worth not using your cell phone,,, when i worked in a business on GNR,,, there would be cops coming in that would express to me that that was the highlight of their day,,, to see if someone was on their phone!!,,, that was 2011,,,,and they are probably more adimant about it now!,,, just saying...really not worth it!,,, you look more cool on the side of the rd. with your 4 ways on,,,
Pakadeva 5/14/2014 1:29:12 AM Report
I wish this section had a "like" button for the comments one like haha.
Sammy1099 5/14/2014 6:48:12 AM Report
You are not a cop, it is up to the police to issue HTA tickets not you. The 4 lane road isn't there for the self rightous to act as a speed governor. You are to move at a safe speed or with the flow of traffic. That means when you pass someone you can and should accelarate so as to clear the lane. That means you may exceed the limit while overtaking slower traffic.
I don't know did people in this town take a different drivers test then the rest of the Country?
Mr. Poster 5/14/2014 7:48:55 AM Report
I often hear this thing about "going with the flow of traffic". If the speed limit is say 50 and all the other cars are travelling at 65...am I free to join in and not expect a speeding ticket? What you say Sam?
GoHoundsGo 5/14/2014 8:03:29 AM Report
As a former military driver instructor and highly trained operator of most types of vehicles ie, Semi-trucks, Busses etc. And whom by the way has never had an accident or speeding ticket...touch wood, I have driven all over Canada, U.S, Middle East and Europe, I have to admit, drivers in Sault Ste Marie rank near the bottom of the barrel. I have never seen so many people who think that they own the road, either driving to way to slow (usually seniors), lack of defensive driving (usually seniors), lack of indicating your intensions ie. signal lights (usually seniors) etc. If you detect a trend here..its intended. Every single close call I've ever had involved a senior (60+) who either had complete disregard for traffic laws or was just oblivious to the other motorists around them. Examples of this are, changing lanes with out checking ones blind spot, diving through a four way stop without stopping, making left or right turns into traffic, assuming the cars they are turning in front of will slow down, driving in the left lane of a four lane road, usually 5 to 10 km's below speed limit while traffic is more or less forced to pass on the right, which is illegal by the way and on and on and on. Now I understand many of the posters here are of the senior variety, and if you take offence to what I'm writing, I'm sorry but the truth hurts. Someone earlier mentioned that young people are the biggest causes of accidents and are the largest group of unsafe drivers, the so called new driver categorie, well just so you know, this is actually a myth. In the early 1980's the AARP, the worlds largest seniors organization appealed or should I say lobbied to the Canadian and US gov'ts to reduce insurance rates. The reason given was experience, and usually drove slower...well this is true to an extent. The actual median age of the best drivers is 30 to 50. Why you ask...science through cognetive testing, both in driving simulators and on the road testing has proven drivers over the age of 60 begin to see substantial reduction responce times, forgetfulness and unfortuneatly a sence of entitlement to drive. Now I know this is going to raise alot of eyebrowes, and alot will think this is hooey...but its actually very true. One might ask why wouldn't insurance companies charge more for senior drivers then, the answer is quite simple...SENIORS VOTE !!! Its easier to focus the blame and charge more for younger people because the 18 to 25yr olds don't vote. If you are looking for proof of these "wild" statements simply take yourself to the StatsCan website or the Insurance Association of Canada stats page. You'll be amazed what you'll see. Have a great day all.
Nunavut 5/14/2014 8:34:54 AM Report
Regarding these people whining about fourlane road left lane hoggers...
I think we need to define what fourlane roads in the Sault this applies to, because if anyone thinks that Great Northern Road or Trunk Road are roads that this should apply to, then I worry about your "selfish attitude" to speed in the left lane. Because those two roads have constant left turn needs so drivers may chose to be in left lane so that they can be in position to turn. And considering both these roads are quite busy , one needs to get into left lane a block or two before the turn...so maybe the impatient left lane speeders, can calm down and wait their turn. Now add to that aspect that the right lanes seem to have by far the worst potholes , then if I chose to drive in the left lane to avoid damaging my car..... then the onus is on city to get right hand lanes safe again so that left lane speeders can get to their destination 60 seconds faster.
Sammy1099 5/14/2014 8:39:27 AM Report
"am I free to join in and not expect a speeding ticket? What you say Sam?"
Never driven on highways have you? Try driving on the 400 or a derivative of it at 80km/hr in the passing lane see what happens.
If everybody is doing 65 then I doubt a cop is going to single you out of all the traffic. If he does challenge it in court. I do remember the police actually had an HTA commercial where they specifically stated you can exceed the speed limit when overtaking,obvously within reason. Cops blow by me on Queen and other streets in this town regularly,and no their lights on on.
The main point is safety if its safer to travel 10-15km/hr over the posted limit then obviously drive with the flow.
Do you think it's safer to have a large bottleneck of traffic or free flowing traffic?
Sammy1099 5/14/2014 8:43:19 AM Report
It's not just about speeding and impaitence, its about congestion. The more vehicles grouped together the more likely an accident.
I don't care if you drive at 10km/hr just pull over if you see a line of 100 cars behind you. While you maybe going 10km/hr at the front of the line the last car is maybe going 1km/hr. Do you get it yet?
MYPOINT 5/14/2014 9:12:31 AM Report
is as follows ...
You seem to be of the opinion that it is ( usually always ) seniors who are making the most infractions with the way they drive. To me, that is the same thing as saying that ( usually always ) most teen drivers are making the most infractions with the way they drive. Let me be clear, I AM a senior, I have driven literally hundreds of thousands of MILES ( because I refuse to use metric ) over my lifetime. I have never even once gotten a ticket for any infraction over the 46+ years that I have been driving. This means that although there probably IS some seniors who do not drive in the manner that you wish they would, you nor anyone else, including insurance companies, can state that any one age group is worse than the other because it is NOT the age group, it IS the individual who is driving that counts.
Some of you are stating that the Sault has some of the worse drivers in Canada and I wholeheartedly agree with that statement.
When I was much younger, I owned and operated some taxi-cabs in Southern Ontario. Whenever one of my cab drivers was involved in any kind of accident with one of my vehicles, they were always instructed to immediately remove the top sign. Why do you ask? Many cops automatically assume and most have the audacity to always blame the cab driver regardless of who was actually at fault. In fact, one time one of my drivers had 4 passengers in her vehicle and was in an accident because someone ran a red light. It turned out to be a 'friend' of the cop who came to investigate this crash. The cop tried his best to put the blame on my driver only to learn that one of the passengers in the cab was a University student who had filmed the entire thing and the film clearly showed that the cop's 'friend' had clearly ran the red light and crashed into my vehicle. It was only then, that the cop did the correct thing and charged his 'friend' with running a red light and causing an accident.
Now there will be some who will say that all cab drivers drive like maniacs all of the time. This is true in SOME cases because I have seen it myself many times. I have to wonder how many of you have hired a cab and asked the driver to get you to your destination as quickly and as cheaply as possible ( meaning run yellow or red lights if possible )? Please don't try and say this does not happen because I can assure you that it happens a LOT more than most of you realize.
As usual, your views may differ :)
osirisptah 5/14/2014 9:32:25 AM Report
I have an idea, quit bitching about the roads, the lanes and everything else. Put down your F***ing phone and wear your seat belt. Don't drive like an A-hole and be courteous to other drivers and pedestrians who share the roadways. If everyone does their part that's all we need to make the roads safer for each other.
Laws are already in place to "keep us safe" and they don't work because people don't follow them.
Mr. Poster 5/14/2014 9:39:13 AM Report
I saw a lady with 2 little lap dogs bouncing all over her lap and steering wheel...this is just as much a hazard as a cell phone.
nobodycares 5/14/2014 9:41:17 AM Report
It would be interesting to find out how many existing drivers would actually pass a road test. Part of renewing you license every five years should be a brief road test. This is not intended to take away your license but to correct the bad habits that must driver learn. I.E. not signalling, turn left into the wrong lane, not coming to a full stop at intersections, etc.
thumbs4208 5/14/2014 10:10:19 AM Report
I agree the Soo has terrible drivers. I have driven all over Candian Citys and this is by far the worst. The most arrogant drivers I have seen. The seniors here(sorry Grand Ma) need to be taken off the road and people(drivers) here need to be educated from distracted driving to tailgating to speed limits (especially in parking lots - like where you going).
But I doubt anything will change as it's everyone.
GoHoundsGo 5/14/2014 10:14:18 AM Report
@MYPOINT While I certainly commend you for not being involved in an accident or not receiving any speeding tickets, you are wrong when you think statistics do not matter. When I say usually I mean most of the time, or over half the time ...if you will, not 100%. The 60+ age group are the largest cause of fatal and non-fatal traffic accidents in North America period. While I agree 100% that not all seniors exibit poor driving habits, for insurance companies, the gov't and the AARP to pass eronious information to the public that has been squed by lobbyists to keep insurance high on the rest of the population for the benefit of a certain older segment is wrong. I am only 41 and have logged over a half million miles, and have seen both young, old , experienced and new drivers drive with their head up the butts but "MyPoint" is that in most instances it has been seniors behind the wheel. Hope you have a great day and Drive Safe.
B Boy 5/14/2014 11:29:33 AM Report
I'm also from Southern Ontario and have driven extensively across Canada, the US, central America and Europe through my careers with the military & police.
I wouldn't say that SSM has the worst as Sudbury and Timmins have some bad drivers but the drivers here are definitely bad. In 30 years of driving, sometimes up to 14 hours a day on shift I had 2 accidents - one was a military off road accident due to terrain and the other a person rad a red light. I drove in the Soo for 2 years and have been t-boned twice and have had 2 people back into my cars in parking lots then leave with no notice.
Perhaps they aren't necessarily bad drivers here, just inconsiderate and ignorant of the law?
Some driving conventions are passed along here. I remember my spouse telling "don't drive in that lane, no one does" or "no one stops for that red light". It was fairly interesting.
MYPOINT 5/14/2014 11:54:17 AM Report
is as follows ...
@GO HOUNDS GO ( I like your nic name btw lol )
I understand what you are saying to some extent. What I have found over my many years of driving is that there are definitely some seniors who drive very erratically at times. Some could say that they do this because they are not used to being in large traffic volumes so they drive a little slower because they know their reflexes are not as quick as they were when they were younger and they want extra time to be able to stop or whatever. That being said, I have also found numerous other drivers who do the same kind of driving in this city - and they can not use their age as an excuse.
I know what it is like with insurance companies and the exorbitant rates they charge for insurance. My own insurance has gone up every year ( or so it seems anyways ) and like I said, I have never even gotten a parking ticket or any other kind of ticket during my 46+ years of driving - both personal as well as commercial driving. I have asked them numerous times as to why MY personal insurance is always going up and their response has ALWAYS been, " You are paying for those young teens who are inexperienced and have a lot of accidents" or words to that effect! I do not have statistics from the USA or from any other Country to dispute your claims from the places you mentioned but I do know what I have seen and heard over these almost five decades of driving.
Have you ever considered the fact that the Govt. may be in cahoots with the insurance companies to some extent? I ask this because the Govt. makes it mandatory to carry insurance ( and any fool knows that we should ) and the insurance companies know that you must carry insurance so they feel free to use whatever excuses they can come up with to charge these exorbitant rates to ALL of us who drive vehicles in this Country.
As always, your views may differ:)
PS... I hope you have an excellent day also.
Battler213 5/14/2014 2:43:41 PM Report
"While you maybe going 10km/hr at the front of the line the last car is maybe going 1km/hr. Do you get it yet?"
Oh wow..... ugh... ha... haha.... oh dear.
Tag33&1/3rd 5/14/2014 3:45:38 PM Report
@gohounds and @mypoint
Fingers sore? Carpal-tunnel? Lol
MYPOINT 5/14/2014 5:34:12 PM Report
is as follows ...
Thankfully not yet but it is probably going to happen soon :)
Hope you are having a great day :)
As always, your views may differ :)
Coles_Mom 5/15/2014 11:19:25 AM Report
Completely agree with GO HOUNDS GO!!! Not all seniors are bad drivers but I think I can safely say that I know a few people who have been effected terribly by elderly driving. Now don't get me wrong I am not saying ALL elderly are bad but the fact remains that all of the things that GO HOUNDS GO said are true!! A few examples: I know a man who owned and operated a successful small business until he was hit by a 70+ woman while he was walking and then she tried to drive away until a witness stopped her. Her reaction "I didn't see him" Whaaaat..you didn't see him when he rolled up on your windshield LOLOL. If you didn't see him lol then maybe you shouldn't be driving!!
I also know a woman who was hit head-on by an elderly woman when she went through a red light. This young mother struggles everyday now trying to raise a 9 month old in pain as a result of her injuries. Does anyone remember "Canada's Worst Driver" The driver that was sent home and was probably the WORST driver on the show (she was sent home because she had angina and neglected to tell staff of the show about it) She said it was "thrilling to go through stop signs and red lights and openly admitted to driving and driving on her way home from bingo. Yup, she was from Sault Ste. Marie.
I have been cut off, witnessed drive-thru's at 4 way stops, among other things so ya I would have to agree with Go Hound Go. In my opinion instead of going for paper testing, elderly people over a certain age should have to go for road tests. How are you supposed to know what kind of a driver a person is if you don't actually witness them driving. Anyone can write a test and have their eyes checked.
Coles_Mom 5/15/2014 11:48:09 AM Report
Sorry I also forgot to mention that the business operator that I spoke of lost his business becuase after the accident was forced to hire staff because he was unable to do it alone as a result of his injuries. He was successful but just starting out and stuggled to pay staff. He tried many different avenues to keep his business afloat but ended up having to close in the long run :(
ranny 5/15/2014 12:04:44 PM Report
aggressive driver? More like careless driver. They need to learn in a 3/4 way stop, you must come to a complete stop. Tapping the break is not a complete stop.
Turning into your own lane. I have no clue why people who are making a turn, need to make a wide turn? Aren't you supposed to turn into the nearest lane?
Smoking is a distraction. Seen a driver with a cigarette in the hand and didn't see a vehicle on their left side.
Cell phone is still a concern. Seen someone driving with their cell phone in the hand or in front of their face.