70 Mile House corridor unsafe for residents

Highway 97 traffic speeds need to be reduced by ministry

To the editor:

Your Sept. 3 Guest Shot article from Transportation Minister Todd Stone outlined projects for the Cariboo Connector for the coming three years.

Unfortunately, there was no mention of any improvement for the highway as it passes through 70 Mile House. There are serious safety concerns with increased traffic flowing at high speeds through this residential area.

Over the years, I have seen many accidents in this section of highway and countless “near misses.”

For example, three different vehicles have been clipped as they tried to turn into our driveway and one more serious accident happened when a driver couldn’t stop in time, went through the ditch, and hit our friend’s vehicle after it had made a right-hand turn off the highway and was in our driveway.

There are at least 15 other driveways or roads accessing the highway in the 2.5-kilometre corridor through the community.

The corners in this stretch of highway limit visibility and drivers travelling at 100 km/h don’t have a lot of time to react when they round a corner to see a truck and horse trailer just pulling onto the highway. The shoulders are not wide and there is little room for error.

Apparently, most of the many accidents in this corridor have not been attributed to “speed.” However, a reduced speed may reduce the frequency of accidents caused by “without due care and attention” or “following too close.” It would at least give drivers more time to react when they see an obstruction and would add only 35 seconds to their total travel time.

The transportation ministry has put up signs to indicate the need to watch for local traffic and suggests reducing speed to a maximum of 70 km/h through the community. I appreciate that some have taken this suggestion to heart, but it needs to be regulated for others.

The four-laning makes it safer to pass slow vehicles on the open road, but I would like to see the ministry carefully address safe travel through communities with 70 Mile House being a case in point.

Gail Moseley

70 Mile House

 

 

 

 

 

 

100 Mile House Free Press