The Greater Victoria Cycling Coalition (GVCC) is calling for improved crash investigation protocols that include road design, along with more investment into protected bike lanes following the death of a young woman.
The woman died after being struck by a vehicle on Friday while cycling near Harriet Street and Gorge Road.
The GVCC is pushing for a “vision zero” region where nobody dies or is seriously injured on city roads.
Corey Burger, GVCC policy and infrastructure chair, points to the death of Eileen Evans in 2016 as proof more needs to be done when someone on a bike is killed.
In 2016, Evans, 73, was killed at the intersection of Government and Fisgard streets, when a truck driver hit her while turning right. The long-time cyclist’s death was ruled an accident, but the GVCC asserts the coroner did not take into account the design of the bike lanes and the lack of physical protection between vehicles and bikes contributed to her death.
“The city has a plan to build protected bike lanes to keep people on bikes safe,” said Burger in a statement. “But neither will happen unless council approves funding in 2021 and beyond.”
According to the GVCC, international best practices for a similar incident is a full investigation that includes experts from civil engineering, urban design, coroner services and traffic safety officers. The only way to achieve vision zero, states the GVCC, is to follow this best practice in the region, along with developing a comprehensive picture of crashes and recommendations to ensure tragedies like this do not happen again.
“We urge municipalities, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, and BC Coroners Service to move quickly to develop improved crash investigations protocols that include road design and increased investment in protected bike lanes,” states the GVCC.