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Crosswalk walk signal at West 10th Ave

How we are improving transportation safety

Fatality rates in Vancouver are low compared to other peer cities, but there is still room for improvement.

What's new

  • Minor amendments to the Street and Traffic Bylaw 2849 and Skateboards in Protected Bike Lanes presented to council in November 2017. View the brief summary  (2.60 MB)
  • Pedestrian signal at Granville and Balfour, installed October 2017
  • Accessible pedestrian signal to assist blind or low vision users crossing at Matheson and SE Marine, installed October 2017

To reach zero traffic related fatalities and injuries, we are:

  • Evaluating hospital and ambulance injury data to understand traffic related serious injuries and make decisions based on that data
  • Identifying priority intersections and corridors
  • Piloting new safety strategies and devices
  • Engaging with the public to travel safely
  • Continuing to work with our safety partners, such as the Vancouver Police Department  (VPD) and the ICBC (Insurance Corporation of BC) to:
    • Develop targeted enforcement programs to tackle dangerous behaviours at priority locations
    • Inspect commercial vehicles with other municipalities, as well as provincial commercial safety and enforcement agencies
    • Cost share infrastructure upgrades that improve safety through ICBC’s  Road Improvement Program 

Quick start action plan

Check out new safety upgrades coming soon. Hover on the map icons for more information.

View a larger map

New items we are piloting

Currently we are testing three new items, which have shown successful results in other cities. 

Results

  • Drivers yielding to pedestrians increased from 50% to 98%
  • Evaluating reliability of solar power, technical issues at one location (West Blvd & 42nd Ave)
  • Concerns from Disabilities Advisory Committee:
    • Need audible queues that are different from a signal and assist blind users crossing

Further actions

  • Continue to improve the reliability of solar power at West Blvd and 42nd Ave.
  • Add audible tones with a verbal message to distinguish from a signal (We are currently testing this at West Blvd and 42nd Ave.).
  • Install flashing beacons at 10 new locations in the next two years.

We developed the requirements for accessible pedestrian signals in consultation with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind (CNIB ) and Access for Sight-Impaired Consumers (ASIC )

Results

Some trial locations have had technical/operational challenges, and we are working with our suppliers to address the issues. We received updated products and went through extensive technical testing.

Further actions

  • Install new accessible pedestrian signals at new signal locations.
  • Upgrade existing signals going into rehabilitation.
  • Develop a prioritized list of locations.

Leading pedestrian intervals improve the visibility of pedestrians and reinforce their right-of-way over turning vehicles, especially in locations with a history of conflict.

Results

The trial location has reduced the severity of conflicts, but have increased the number of conflicts. However, successful results have been observed in other cities (i.e. Surrey and New York).

Further action

Develop a list of recommended locations.

Effectiveness of safety upgrades

To help us identify the most successful solutions in reducing traffic related fatalities and injury collisions at priority locations, we assess the effectiveness of safety upgrades that have been implemented in recent years, including actions recommended through the Pedestrian Safety Study and Action Plan  (8 MB) and Cycling Safety Study  (10 MB).

Upgrades Locations implemented in last 5 years Reduction of incidents involving pedestrians in a collision Reduction of incidents involving pedestrians with a fatality or injury in a collision
New pedestrian signals 2 -96% -20%
Left turn vehicle arrow 5 -38% -26%
LED lighting 18 -27% -46% (after dark collisions)
Countdown timers 33 -28% -10%
Slower walking speeds 4 -12%  
Upgrades Locations implemented in last five years Reduction of incidents involving a cyclist in a collision Reduction of  incidents involving a cyclist with a fatality or injury in a collision
Removal of traffic circles 2 -100% -60%
Median extension (right turn more difficult for vehicles) 1 -42% (right turn collisions) -33% (right turn collisions)
Added lighting 1 -25%  (after dark collisions) -0%
Green paint at conflict areas 6 Data not sufficient to assess Data not sufficient to assess