Bracebridge OPP are focusing on pedestrian safety this spring after two collisions between motor vehicles and pedestrians at the Wellington Street and Monck Road intersection in Bracebridge.
The most recent incident occurred on Thursday April 28th at 3:30 p.m. when a vehicle failed to stop while making a right turn from Wellington Street onto Monck road and struck the school crossing guard. The crossing guard was able to complete her duties but later attended the hospital for treatment of minor injuries. Police are continuing the investigation into the collision as the vehicle that struck the school crossing guard fled the scene.
School crossing guards are easily identifiable wearing bright orange reflective vests and carrying stop signs and are positioned at three busy locations in Bracebridge in order to assist children in getting to and from school safely.
New rules came into effect on January 1, 2016 regarding pedestrian crossovers and school crossings that direct motorists and cyclists to stop and yield the ENTIRE roadway in certain locations, specifically pedestrian crossovers, school crossings and intersections where there is a crossing guard. This means that the motorist must wait until all pedestrians have cleared the entire roadway and the school crossing guard has returned to the sidewalk before proceeding.
Some safety pointers for motorists include:
- always look for pedestrians, especially when turning;
- watch for children and drive cautiously through school zones, residential areas and other areas where children might be walking or playing;
- be patient, some pedestrians require extra time while crossing the road;
Pedestrians are asked to do their part to keep the roads safe as well by:
- crossing only at marked crosswalks or traffic lights;
- making eye contact with drivers before stepping onto the road;
- obeying traffic signals; and
- being attentive to their surroundings.
Drivers may be fined up to $500 and face 3 demerit points for offences relating to these areas and fines are doubled in clearly marked Community Safety Zones.
Additional information regarding the new laws can be found at http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/safety/pedestrian-safety.shtml