EDMONTON, Alta. — The Alberta government will inject millions of dollars in funding to implement a made-in-Alberta traffic safety initiative, with the goal of reducing injuries and deaths in the province.
During the next three years, approximately $65 million will be spent to administer Alberta’s Traffic Safety Plan. The largest portion, about $42 million, will go towards infrastructure enhancements including shoulder and centre rumble strips, intersections and enhanced pavement markings.
An additional 42 Traffic Sheriffs will be hired to monitor traffic safety on the province’s highways for about $4 million. Also earmarked in the new Traffic Safety Plan is an effort to work towards delivering a commercial training and driver certification program, as well as providing more rest stops in rural settings along provincial highway routes.
The Traffic Safety Plan outlines key initiatives to help prevent motor vehicle collisions, build safer roads, enforce traffic laws and better educate all Albertans about traffic safety. The plan was developed in response to the McDermid Report, “Saving Lives on Alberta’s Roads: Report and Recommendations for a Traffic Collision Fatality and Injury Reduction Strategy.”
“Traffic safety needs to be a concern for everyone, and driver attitude is an essential component of any traffic safety plan,” said Ty Lund, Minister of Infrastructure and Transportation. “All road users must realize that there are deadly consequences of not giving one’s full attention to the important task of driving.”
The all-encompassing plan is comprised of numerous initiatives in different focus areas including leadership and coordination, effective communications, community traffic safety, public education and awareness, research and evidence-based decisions, sustained enforcement, legislation based on best practices, and engineering and infrastructure improvements.
Amidst all the focus areas, there are various initiatives with a focus on improving enforcement of commercial carriers in the province through communication, education, partnership programs and new technology.
“By combining education and action, this plan fits perfectly with other traffic safety initiatives such as our new Alberta Sheriff Highway Patrol,” said Harvey Cenaiko, Solicitor General and Minister of Public Security.
As the Alberta Traffic Safety Plan moves forward, new laws will be considered and will be formulated based on research and best practice. The Traffic Safety Plan and the McDermid Report are can be viewed at: www.infratrans.gov.ab.ca and click on publications.