February worst in two decades

February second deadliest

on road fatalities

The Portage Citizen

Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI) reports last month was the second-worst February for auto-related fatalities in nearly two decades.

MPI revealed there were nine fatalities on Manitoba roads in the month of February.

The public insurer previously reported 2017 was one of the safest for road fatalities in Manitoba in over 35 years.

“The number of fatalities on Manitoba roadways last month should be a wake-up call to all drivers, particularly with several weeks of winter weather and road conditions still ahead of us,” Ward Keith, chief administrative officer for MPI, said Friday.

In a press release MPI says its preliminary data shows almost half of the fatalities involved alcohol, nearly two-thirds involved not wearing seatbelts and in two-thirds of the crashes, speed is suspected as a contributing factor. Seven of the nine fatalities occurred in rural Manitoba.

The MPI press release further said ‘Manitobans need to re-evaluate their driving habits, don’t drink and drive and stop high risk driving behaviours such as texting while driving, speeding and not wearing seatbelts.’

There were four road fatalities in Manitoba in January, making the total number in the first two months of 2018 nearly three times higher than in the same period last year— and double the preceding five-year average.

 

Facts on dangerous driving behaviours

Distracted driving is a leading contributing factor in total collisions in Manitoba. Nearly 30 people are killed on Manitoba roads each year due to distracted driving.

Approximately one in every five fatal collisions in Manitoba is linked to impaired driving.

Speed is a contributing factor in nearly 20 per cent of all people killed in collisions in Manitoba annually.

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