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De Leur P.,West Corporation | Weightman M.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Transportation Research Record | Year: 2015

The High-Risk Corridor (HRC) Program of British Columbia, Canada, was created because of recognition that a safe roadway environment is a shared responsibility of several public agencies, including the police and the road authority. In British Columbia, another public agency interested in and responsible for road safety is the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, a provincial agency responsible for vehicle insurance and driver licensing services. It was felt that coordinated strategic efforts by public agencies responsible for road safety could yield greater safety benefits than individual agency efforts undertaken in isolation. This paper provides an overview of British Columbia's HRC Program and presents a case study example to demonstrate the program's success in reducing frequency and severity of collisions on an HRC. The paper also describes the program's technical elements, including how corridors are defined as high risk and the collision and infrastructure analysis used to guide the interventions deployed as part of the program. Coordinated strategic efforts between agencies are detailed to illustrate the range and integration of road safety initiatives. Finally, results of a robust time series evaluation are presented to show the significant and positive safety impact of the HRC Program, which has resulted in a large reduction in frequency and severity of collisions.

Sacchi E.,University of British Columbia | Sayed T.,University of British Columbia | Deleur P.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Accident Analysis and Prevention | Year: 2013

This study presents the results of a collision-based full Bayes (FB) before-after (BA) safety evaluation of a newly proposed design for channelized right-turn lanes. The design which is termed "Smart Channels" decreases the angle of the channelized right-turn to approximately 70. Its implementation is usually advocated to afford drivers a better view of the traffic stream they are to merge with and to allow also for safer pedestrian crossing. The evaluation used data for three treatment intersections and several comparison sites in the city of Penticton, British Columbia. The evaluation utilized FB univariate and multivariate linear intervention models with multiple regression links representing time, treatment, and interaction effects as well as the traffic volumes effects. As well, the models were extended to incorporate random parameters to account for the correlation between sites within comparison-treatment pairs. The results showed that the implementation of the right-turn treatment has resulted in a considerable reduction in the severity and frequency of collisions. Another objective of the paper was to compare the results of the collision-based evaluation with the results of a traffic conflict-based evaluation of the same treatment intersections. The comparison showed remarkable similarity between the overall and the location specific reductions in conflicts and collisions which provides support for using traffic conflicts in BA studies. The results also provide positive empirical evidence that can support the validity of traffic conflict techniques. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Cooper P.J.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Meckle W.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Andersen L.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Journal of Safety Research | Year: 2010

Introduction: Induced exposure has a long history of development and usage in traffic safety research but a major question has always concerned the extent to which the accumulation of culpable and non-culpable involvements can be considered independent. Method: Culpability assessments of 32,630 vehicles' crashclaim involvements adjudicated by insurance adjusters were matched with vehicle odometer readings taken at emission testing using consistent identification of vehicles and principal operators over a 5-year period. Result: It was found that the accumulation of culpable crash involvements was not entirely independent of that for non-culpable involvements. However, the rate of non-culpable involvements was determined to be an acceptable surrogate for travel exposure rate where sample sizes were large. Discussion: The relationship between the rate of non-culpable involvements and the rate of travel exposure for data subsets when both were normalized by the overall sample rates was reminiscent of an accident-volume curve for roadway locations in traffic engineering theory. This suggested that only a portion of non-culpable involvements actually related directly to travel and this lead to a correction factor that could be applied. Impact on Industry: While lack of independence of involvement rates may be problematic for a direct risk ratio application, it does not invalidate the use of non-culpable involvements to predict travel. For insurers that have a need to estimate travel amounts for different driver/vehicle groups as part of the insurance rating purposes, this can be a useful application. © 2010 National Safety Council and Elsevier Ltd.

Cooper P.J.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Osborn J.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Meckle W.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part D: Journal of Automobile Engineering | Year: 2010

The study was designed to investigate the effect of the model year on crashes and injuries, where the latter were of the mild to moderate variety, independent of other driver or vehicle factors and travel exposure. Previous research on vehicle safety design has focused on fatal or serious injuries but, for traffic safety evaluations in smaller jurisdictions and over limited time frames, a more numerous-outcome variable must be used. The study was conducted with over 32 000 driver-vehicle combinations. Binary logistic regression was employed to estimate the effects of the model year ranges on injuries and driving exposure, while controlling the other factors. A salutory effect of increasing the model year on the injury risk was found but this was countered by the increased travel associated with the newer vehicles. © Authors 2010.

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.

Hesse G.,British Columbia Conservation Foundation | 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.

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.

Purssell R.A.,University of British Columbia | Chan H.,University of British Columbia | Brown D.,University of British Columbia | Fang M.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Brubacher J.R.,University of British Columbia
Traffic Injury Prevention | Year: 2014

Objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the rate of, and risk factors for, subsequent impaired driving activity (IDA) in a cohort of injured passengers who were treated for injuries in a Canadian trauma center. Methods: We studied adult passengers who were occupants in vehicles involved in motor vehicle crashes (MVCs) and either included in the British Columbia (BC) trauma registry (January 1, 1992-December 31, 2004) or treated in the emergency department (ED) of Vancouver General Hospital (VGH; January 1, 1999-December 31, 2003). Passengers were linked to their driver's license and hence to their driving record using personal health number and demographic information. Injured passengers were stratified into 3 groups based on their blood alcohol concentration (BAC) at time of ED presentation: group 1: BAC = 0, group 2: 0 < BAC ≤ 17.3 mM (0.08%), group 3: BAC > 17.3 mM (0.08%). Two outcome variables were studied: involvement in a subsequent IDA and time to their first subsequent IDA. IDA was defined as a criminal code conviction for impaired driving, a 24-h or 90-day license suspension for impaired driving, and/or involvement in an MVC where police cited alcohol as a factor. Time to first IDA following the index event among passenger BAC groups was compared with Kaplan-Meier survival analysis. Cox proportional hazards models were employed to examine the effect of various potential risk factors on time to engage in first IDA. Results: Injured passengers with any BAC at the time of ED visit were more likely to engage in IDA and had their first IDA sooner after the index event than those with zero BAC. Among this cohort of injured passengers, 12.1 percent with BAC = 0, 29.9 percent with 0 < BAC ≤ 17.3 mM (0.08%), and 37.8 percent with a BAC > 17.3 mM (0.08%) engaged in IDA. Compared to passengers with BAC = 0, group 3 passengers and group 2 passengers were 2.06 times and 1.79 times more likely to engage in future IDA. Twenty-five percent of injured passengers engaged their first IDA by 57 and 38 months in groups 2 and 3, respectively. Previous IDA and being male were also significant risk factors for future IDA. Those with a history of IDA before the index event were 2.37 times more likely to engage in subsequent IDA. Conclusions: Injured alcohol-impaired passengers are at high risk for IDA and should be included in impaired driving prevention programs. © 2014 Copyright Taylor and Francis Group, LLC.

Wilson R.J.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Wiggins S.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia | Fang M.,Insurance Corporation of British Columbia
Traffic Injury Prevention | Year: 2010

Objective: The study aimed to establish an association between seat belt ticketing by police, seat belt wearing rates, and decreases in casualty rates following the implementation of a community seat belt initiative in a northern region of British Columbia. Methods: Annual and monthly violation ticket rates and the percentage of casualties unbelted in collisions were computed for the North Central region and a comparison region, the Southern Interior. The trends in annual seat belt ticket rates, seat belt use among injured victims, and injury data from 2001 through 2007 were examined by descriptive/univariate methods and with intervention time series analysis. Use of a casualty rate measure controlled for changes in collision frequency over time. The primary outcome measure was injury claim incidents involving injuries other than to soft tissue. Injury claims involving only soft tissue were examined as a control series, because it was reasoned this subset of casualties would be less impacted by seat belt use. Results: Seat belt tickets per capita increased in the North Central (NC) region over the study period, exceeding levels in all other regions. The percentage of unbelted occupants in casualty crashes fell by about 3 percent per year in the NC region after the initiative was introduced compared to about 1 percent per year in the SI region. The time series models revealed a significant reduction in non soft tissue casualties per 100 collisions per month. No significant reduction in the soft tissue only injury criterion was detected. Conclusions: A strong community initiative backed by support at the provincial level can be successful in a largely rural and sparsely populated northern region despite the challenges faced in such regions. © 2010 Insurance Corporation of British Columbia.

Pump J.,Carson Engineering Consulting | 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.

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