CALGARY (660 NEWS) – Imagine a world where no lives were lost because of motor vehicle crashes, well the City of Calgary is hoping to make that world a reality.
This week, the city hosted the national conference for the Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals (CARSP). Among the many topics discussed was an initiative called ‘Vision Zero’.
“When you say Vision Zero, people might have different ideas about what that might mean,” said Leader of Traffic Safety for Calgary, Tony Churchill. “We recognize that we’ll continue to have collisions, we just want to make sure that when those collisions happen it’s just property damage or minor injuries.”
Calgary’s Vision Zero is a 5 year plan, specific to the city, w specific targets & timelines. Tony, the guy running it, literally created a flat bed truck system that can throw down specially design curbs to create traffic-calmed neighbourhoods in a hurry.
Winnipeg: your move. pic.twitter.com/qtbe8rI4gg
— Anders Swanson (@SwansonAnders) May 28, 2019
The vision was developed in Sweden but the bottom is simple: no lives should be lost on the roads.
According to Churchill, pedestrian fatalities are the most concerning issue, with 30 per cent of fatal crashes involving a pedestrian in Calgary.
He said families are devastated every year when a loved one is lost due to these incidents.
He says however, it’s not just family members impacted.
“We really want to stop those life changing or life ending collisions. It impacts a lot of people. A lot of people don’t experience it in many, many years but at the end of the day it is a pretty heavy burden on our society.”
READ MORE: City recognizes May as Traffic Safety Month
Churchill points out addressing excessive speed is one big factor in ‘Vision Zero’. He points to these speed issues as a reason behind a city proposal to potentially reduce residential speed limits to 30 km/hr.
He said that ultimately, everyone in Calgary, not just motorists are responsible for road safety.
“We still expect drivers to do their best to follow the laws that we have. We want citizens to know that we’re doing as much as we can in working with our partners in police, public health and all those different groups to improve it.”
Churchill said they will bring an engagement plan on road safety to city council in June, with recommendations expected by the end of the year.