Between Jan. 1 and Aug. 31 of 2018, Sidney/North Saanich RCMP responded to 187 collisions, with 77 in North Saanich, 93 in Sidney, 14 in Central Saanich, two in Willis Point and one in Saanich. Of the total collisions, five were alcohol related and 10 involved a pedestrian or cyclist.
As of Aug. 31, officers removed 75 impaired drivers from the roads and issued 1,651 violation tickets or warnings.
There was one fatal collision this year, occurring when a woman veered off Lands End Road.
Of the top five crash locations, the McTavish interchange is the most crash prone with 19 collisions since the beginning of 2018.
Cpl. Chris Manseau said roundabouts typically had slightly more accidents than regular intersections, but each accident is much less severe.
- McTavish Roundabout: 19
- Beacon/Patricia Bay Hwy: 14
- 11300 Patricia Bay Hwy: 10
- Thrifty Food Parking Lot: 7
- Wain Road On/Off Ramps: 5
Crashes typically happen between 12-3 p.m. and 4-6 p.m., with the most crash prone time being Fridays at 5-6 p.m.
There has been a 62 per cent increase in three-day immediate roadside prohibitions, a 250 per cent increase in tickets for electronic devices, a 157 per cent increase in drivers license infractions, and a 127 per cent increase in speeding tickets, which Manseau said could be because the local RCMP has added an additional traffic officer.
Given Sidney’s older demographic, Manseau said there were a few unique challenges compared to his previous postings.
“We do have a higher amount of vehicles claimed to be stolen but probably just misplaced,” said Manseau.
“We’ll drive them around and we’ll see it later, three blocks over, because they went to the wrong grocery store or what have you,” he said.
Manseau said with the local election coming up, he has also noticed a significant increase in speeding complaints, who specifically say speed on their street is an election issue.
In response to complaints, the Town of Sidney placed a speed monitoring board on Weiler Ave. on the airport side. For the first week, it appeared off to drivers, but was actually tracking vehicle speeds to see when people were speeding. After a week or so, staff would turn on the display showing vehicle speed, followed by targeted speed enforcement in the area.
For residents with traffic complaints, Manseau recommended contacting the Sidney/North Saanich RCMP first, who will create a file and follow up with the complainant.