CASE LAW - Trytko v Kafafi

BC Courts Coat of ArmsThis case involves the determination of liability for a two vehicle collision in a traffic circle (referred to as a roundabout in the decision) at the intersection of Jervis Street and Nelson Street in Vancouver. Carrie Trytko was driving northbound on Jervis Street and entered the traffic circle after yielding to traffic approaching from her left. Once in the circle she observed Merdahd Kafafi approaching from her right. The court found that Mr. Kafafi failed to slow as he entered the circle and the two vehicles collided.

Round and Round the Roundabout

Traffic CircleRoundabouts and traffic circles are not new to British Columbia, but if the complaints in my inbox are any indication, they are still totally mystifying to some drivers. Common issues include bulldozing into the circle without yielding, signalling when there is no need, not signalling when there is a need, and yes, going around them in the wrong direction.

Most e-mails observe that while new drivers may be taught how to use these intersections properly, the rest of us have to figure it out on our own and somebody has to clue us in. In general, fingers point to either the provincial government or ICBC having primary responsibility for this task. I disagree. Basic responsibility for keeping driving skills up to date rest with the individual driver.

Measuring Vehicle Speed With Laser

Laser GunI can remember the anticipation when our highway patrol unit was issued it's first laser speed measuring device, an LTI 20/20 Marksman. Imagine! Here was a device that we could point at a single vehicle in the traffic stream and accurately measure only it's speed. It was fast enough to re-target and measure the vehicles around it too. No one would want to use hand held radar once we were trained on this.

Make Way to Give Way

AmbulanceSirens! I'm being overtaken by an ambulance on the way to a call. Signal, move out of the right lane onto the shoulder and stop. Traffic around me seems to be well aware today too as they are doing much the same thing.

Emergency right of way is being granted promptly until the ambulance reaches traffic stopped for a red light at an intersection. This is where the emergency response grinds to a halt as the stationary drivers don't seem to be either willing or able to get out of the way.

NEWS - How the Canadian Coalition on Distracted Driving Plans to End Texting Behind the Wheel

CCODD LogoThere may be no greater threat in the everyday life of Canadians than a driver with a cell phone.

Texting while driving is a full-blown epidemic, and even though most Canadians say they know it’s a bad habit, our communities have had very little success in bringing the numbers down.

REPORT - Supporting Safe Driving Into Old Age

older driver and carThis is a report from Britain that examines the needs of an aging population in the context of our current highway system:

Our road transport system, our roads and vehicles, have been designed for use by fit, middle aged motorists in the middle of the spectrum of road users. Looked at through an older driver’s prism, the current road system doesn’t do them many favours. But with careful planning and design, it could be so much better, not only for the older motorist but for all motorists.

NEWS - Highway Line Paint Research

New BC LogoWhen the Government of Canada put an end to the use of oil based paint for highway line markings the durability that we had come to expect ended. Since that time the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure has been searching for and testing suitable replacements. Starting this month a new, thicker water-based paint will be applied on major B.C. highways along with a new reflective glass bead in areas where wet nights are an issue.

Drivers Make Two Kinds of Mistakes

stop signI watched a woman run a stop sign the other day while I was out for a walk. I knew that this was a route that she traveled often and she should be familiar with stopping there. I could see that she was checking around her as she approached the T intersection so I'm going to assume that she was in a hurry and made the conscious decision to slow down instead of stop.

NEWS - Driver Training Bursary for Youth in Care

Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks LogoI.C.B.C., the Government of British Columbia and the Federation of B.C. Youth in Care Networks have announced $50,000 in funding to set up two bursaries that will aid youth in care. The Take the Wheel program will fund driver training and support in the coming year to enable at least 50 youth and young adults to learn to drive properly. Having a driver's licence is often critical to be able to obtain and keep a job in our society.

CASE LAW - Suran v Auluck

BC Courts Coat of ArmsThis case begins with a street race that took place on August 4, 2008 in Delta. The race ended with one passenger dead and one driver injured. Madam Justice Burke decided liability for the crash on March 24, 2017. She found the driver of the second car involved in the street race 10% liable even though he was not part of the collision and was in police custody when it occurred. What remains to be decided is the amount of damages that the parties are entitled to or will have to pay.

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