Designing and building safer roads

We regularly screen Strathcona County’s road network to check for locations with a high incidence of serious collisions. When we identify a location, we conduct a full assessment to find out how to improve the safety of that spot. All actions are based on Strathcona County’s Intersection Safety Action Plan (1.7 MB) , developed in 2017.

Traffic circle

Traffic safety priorities

1 - Reduce right angle (t-bone) collisions

Angle collisions, caused when someone turns left across another vehicles path or disobeys a stop sign or red light, are generally the most dangerous type of collisions for vehicle occupants. Vehicles offer little side protection, and the human body cannot tolerate very high forces from the side before injury occurs.

2 - Reduce collision involving pedestrian and cyclists

Collisions involving pedestrians and cyclists are most common at intersections, often by left or right turning vehicles. Historically, in the County, most serious vulnerable road user collisions happen on arterial and rural grid roads. However, about ¼ of all pedestrian collisions happen in residential areas.

In the last ten years, 71% of residential pedestrian collisions were the result of driver error. The most common cause of these collisions is when the driver fails to yield the right of way to the pedestrian at an intersection.

3 - Reduce speed and improve intersection safety

The most important factor to improve intersection safety is to reduce the speed of vehicles as they travel through the intersection.

Occupants in a vehicle t-boned at 50 km/h have a 90% chance of escaping unharmed. By 70 km/h, they have a 90% chance of death or serious injury requiring hospitalization.

Learn more about the role of speed in crashes. 

Techniques for safer intersections

New or redeveloped roads in the County are designed to be as safe as possible. Some techniques used are:

  • Roundabouts: Because they eliminate left turns and force drivers to slow down as they approach the intersections, roundabouts can reduce serious injury and fatal collisions by as much as 78 per cent.
  • Changes to traffic signals, such as allowing for left turns only during protected times, reduce the incidence of angle collisions.

Partners and research

Strathcona County is proud to be a member of the Capital Region Intersection Safety Partnership (CRISP). CRISP shares resources and expertise to implement ongoing, collaborative and integrated intersection safety initiatives to reduce the frequency and severity of intersection collisions in the Capital Region.

 

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Last updated: Tuesday, February 12, 2019
Page ID: 50456