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Rea R.V.,University of Northern British Columbia | Child K.N.,BC Hydro | Spata D.P.,British Columbia Rail Ltd. | MacDonald D.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Environmental Management | Year: 2010

Plants cut at different times produce resprouts that vary in their nutritional value relative to when they are cut. To determine how vegetation management in transportation (road and rail) corridors at different times of the year could influence browse quality in the years following cutting, and how this could potentially influence encounters between herbivores and vehicles, we undertook a 3-year study. In 2001, at a wildlife viewing area near Prince George, British Columbia, Canada, we established a control area and treatment areas where shrubs and trees that are used as food by moose (Alces alces) were cut at the beginning of June, July, August, September, and October. In the fall, moose were most often observed browsing the resprouts of plants cut in August (years 1 and 2 post-treatment) and September (year 3). Cumulative winter track counts were highest in the uncut control area in the years following cutting. Spring pellet counts revealed that most pellets were deposited in the uncut (years 1 and 2) and August-cut (year 3) areas during winter. With the exception of the first year after cutting, browse removal by moose was highest for plants cut later in the growing season. Overall, our findings suggest that following cutting, plants cut later in the year are selected more often by moose relative to those cut earlier. To reduce browse use of corridor vegetation in areas where concerns for moose-vehicle collisions exist, we recommend that vegetation maintenance activities be conducted in the early summer months of June and July. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.

Brubacher J.R.,University of British Columbia | Chan H.,University of British Columbia | Fang M.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Brown D.,University of British Columbia | Purssell R.,University of British Columbia
Traffic Injury Prevention | Year: 2013

Objective: Injured drivers with blood alcohol concentration (BAC) above the legal limit are rarely convicted of impaired driving. One explanation is that police may have difficulty recognizing alcohol intoxication in injured drivers. In this study, we compare police documentation of alcohol involvement with BAC measured on arrival at a hospital. Our objectives were to determine how often police document alcohol involvement in injured drivers with BAC ≥ 0.05 percent and identify factors that influence police documentation of alcohol involvement. Methods: We included injured drivers (1999-2003) who were admitted to a British Columbia trauma center or treated in the Vancouver General Hospital emergency department. We used probabilistic linkage to obtain police collision reports. Police were considered to have indicated alcohol involvement if (1) police documented that alcohol contributed to the crash, (2) the driver received an administrative sanction for impaired driving, or (3) the driver was criminally convicted of impaired driving. The proportion of drivers for whom police indicated alcohol involvement was determined relative to age, gender, BAC levels, crash severity, and crash characteristics. Multivariate logistic regression was used to identify factors independently associated with police indication of alcohol involvement. Results: Two thousand four hundred and ten injured drivers (73.5% male) were matched to a police report. Overall, 857 (35.6%) drivers tested positive for alcohol (BAC ≥ 0) and 736/857 (85.9%) of alcohol-positive drivers had a BAC ≥ 0.05 percent (the legal limit in British Columbia). Of the 736 drivers with a BAC > 0.05 percent at time of admission, police indicated alcohol involvement in 530 (72.0%). The criminal code conviction rate for impaired driving was 4.7 percent for drivers with 0.08 percent ≤ BAC < 0.16 percent and 13.6 percent for drivers with BAC > 0.16 percent. The following factors were associated with higher odds of police indicating alcohol involvement: (1) increasing blood alcohol levels, (2) a prior record of impaired driving, (3) involvement in a single-vehicle crash, (4) involvement in a nighttime crash, and (5) traffic violations or unsafe driving actions recorded by police. Conclusions: Police recognized and documented alcohol involvement in 72 percent of injured drivers with BAC ≥ 0.05 percent. Police documentation of alcohol involvement was more common at higher BAC levels, in nighttime or single-vehicle crashes, for drivers who committed traffic violations or drove unsafely, and for drivers with a prior record of impaired driving. The low conviction rate of injured impaired drivers does not appear to be due to police inability to recognize alcohol involvement. © 2013 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Wong A.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Institute of Transportation Engineers Annual Meeting and Exhibit 2010 | Year: 2010

ICBC has invested over $110 million in road safety mitigations through the Road Improvement Program since 1991. The past 20 years' experience has shown sustainable benefits and helped to expand the knowledge base of road safety in BC. This presentation will provide a brief summary of the past and present achievements and what the direction is for the future. Through partnerships, the RI Program has leveraged over $750 million in different types of mitigation measures. Some examples of successful projects will be highlighted.

Purssell R.,UBC | Brown D.,UBC | Brubacher J.R.,UBC | Wilson J.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | And 6 more authors.
Traffic Injury Prevention | Year: 2010

Objective: We determined the rate of, and predictive factors for, subsequent impaired driving activity (IDA) by injured drivers treated in a Canadian tertiary care emergency department (ED) following a motor vehicle crash (MVC). Methods: We retrospectively identified all drivers injured in a MVC who presented to our tertiary care, urban ED (1999-2003) and had their blood alcohol content (BAC) measured. Injured drivers were categorized by BAC: group 1, BAC = 0; group 2, 0 < BAC ≤ 17.3 mM (80 mg/dL, legal limit); and group 3, BAC > 17.3 mM. IDA was defined as any of the following: a conviction for impaired driving; a 24-h or 90-day license suspension for impaired driving; involvement in alcohol-related MVC. Time to IDA following the index event between groups was compared with Kaplan-Meier survival analyses. Effects of covariates on time to IDA were analyzed using Cox proportional hazards models. Results: During the study period, 1489 injured drivers met study criteria: 1171 in group 1, 51 in group 2, and 267 in group 3. During an average follow-up of 52.4 months, 82 (30.7%) group 3 drivers engaged in subsequent IDA, compared with 80 (6.8%) group 1 drivers (p < 0.0001). Youth, male gender, history of previous IDA, and the number of previous IDA events were all associated with a significant increase in subsequent IDA. A history of IDA was the strongest predictor of future IDA in group 1 (440% increase risk) and in group 3 (80% increased risk). The magnitude of BAC elevation above the legal limit was not predictive of future IDA. Conclusions: A high portion of injured impaired drivers who present to hospital engage in repeat IDA following discharge. Besides impairment at time of hospital visit, the best predictor of future IDA is a history of IDA prior to the index event. © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Hesse G.,Wildlife Collision Prevention Program | Rea R.V.,University of Northern British Columbia | Klassen N.,University of Northern British Columbia | Emmons S.,University of Northern British Columbia | And 2 more authors.
Wildlife Biology in Practice | Year: 2010

Wildlife vehicle collisions present a serious challenge to road safety. Although spatially accurate wildlife collision data are necessary to identify areas where wildlife vehicle collisions are recurrent, global positioning system technology has not been used extensively to mark either animal carcass locations or animal live sighting locations along roadsides. We modified an existing global positioning system device (Otto-Driving Companion®) to record live sightings and carcass locations of deer (Odocoileus spp.) and moose (Alces alces) in northern British Columbia, Canada and assess the operational feasibility of the device to collect data quickly and reliably. Ten modified Otto-Driving Companion® units were installed in commercial semi-trailer trucks and roadside points of interest were recorded between July 2006 and May 2007. The device was straightforward to install and operate, and functioned proficiently for data collection. Electronic data transfers from the units to the researchers were simple and easily completed. Maps showing live sighting and carcass locations were created from the data without difficulty. While methodologies remain to be developed to normalise the data and minimise temporal biases arising from non-systematic data collection, the modified Otto-Driving Companion® is well suited to the collection of specific roadside data point locations for a variety of operational and research purposes.

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