Funding paves way for road improvement projects in South Okanagan

ICBC dedicates $189,000 to increasing safety on South Okanagan roads

ICBC has invested $189,000 to make roads in the South Okanagan safer.

“We care about people’s well-being and are always looking for new ways to create safer roads,” said Fiona Temple, ICBC’s director of road safety. “That’s why we work with communities to identify high-crash areas and make improvements that benefit everyone — drivers, cyclists and pedestrians. Simply put, safer drivers and roads mean fewer crashes, injuries and deaths.”

Some of the road improvement projects completed in 2011 in the South Okanagan include traffic signal installation at Warren Avenue and Atkinson Avenue and Government Street and Warren Avenue in Penticton, widened lanes and shoulders at Yellow Lake in Keremeos, a multi-purpose trail near Osoyoos Lake on Highway 97 and rumble strip installation from Okanagan Falls to Summerland.

“Innovation and evolution in road safety strategies are especially important in small communities like ours, where driving is an everyday reality,” said John Slater, MLA for Boundary Similkameen. “ICBC’s road safety program has provided the region with many improvements over the last few years, and by doing so, keeps our families safer.”

Approximately $1.3 million has been given to road projects in the Southern Interior since 1989. A recent evaluation of the program found that two years following a project’s implementation there is, on average, a 20 per cent reduction in severe crashes and a 12 per cent reduction in property damage crashes. The evaluation concluded that for every dollar invested in a project, ICBC and customers save $5.60 over two years and $12.80 over five years in reduced claims costs.