Mid-Island mayhem: crash stats identify worst intersections

Darrell Bellaart

Black Press

It should come as no surprise the most dangerous intersections on northern Vancouver Island are where the traffic is.

Nanaimo leads the list of the worst crash sites north of the Malahat, with six of the top ten spots.

Two Nanaimo locations share the title for highest numbers of crashes: Highway 19A at Mostar and Rutherford roads; and Bowen Road and Highway 19A.

Each location had a total of 310 crashes between 2009 and 2013, according to a report compiled by ICBC for Black Press, looking at the mid-Island region (from Mill Bay to Campbell River).

The data is revealing, but number of crashes alone does not give the final word on safety. It comes as no surprise the greatest number of crashes were counted in those cities that have the highest populations.

“If you look at that list and think about it, those really are the busiest intersections in the city,” said Gordon Foy, city of Nanaimo traffic and transportation planning engineer.

Duncan locations ranked fourth and fifth on the list, with 240 crashes counted in that period at Trans-Canada Highway and Trunk Road, and 230 crashes at Beverly Street and Trans-Canada Highway.

The city of Courtenay, meanwhile, was home to the seventh- and tenth-most dangerous intersections: 17th Street and Cliffe Avenue had 190 crashes, while the Island Highway and Ryan Road had 150 incidents.

Other top-10 crash sites in Nanaimo are: the Island Highway North/Northfield Road turning lane, with 280; the Aulds Road/Hammond Bay Road Island Highway North turning lane, with 270; Bowen and Northfield Road, with 160 incidents; and Turner Road and Highway 19A, with 150 crashes.

In descending order, 11 through 20 are:

Lerwick Road and Ryan Road, in Courtenay (150),

Enterprise Street  and Highway 19A, Nanaimo (150),

Jingle Pot Road, Highway 19A and Norwell Drive, in Nanaimo (140)

Tenth Street and Maki Road at Highway 19A, Nanaimo (130)

Deloume Road and Trans-Canada Highway, in Mill Bay (110)

Aulds Road and Aulds Road off-ramp and Nanaimo Parkway and Mall Access, Lantzville/Nanaimo (110)

17th Street Bridge and Comox Road, Courtenay (100),

Cedar Road and Highway 19A and Nanaimo Parkway, Nanaimo (100)

Old Island Highway and Ryan Road, Courtenay (100)

Comox Road and Terminal Ave, Nanaimo (100).

According to ICBC, the most common causes of crashes are failing to yield to oncoming traffic, ignoring traffic control devices, following too close, speeding and improper lane changes.

Mid-North Vancouver Island cities included in the study were Mill Bay, Duncan, Ladysmith, Nanaimo, Parksville, Qualicum, Courtenay, and Campbell River.

The most dangerous intersections in cities that did not crack the top 20 are:

Campbell River: 16th Avenue and Dogwood (49).

Comox: Anderton and E Ryan (39).

Qualicum Beach: Country Club Drive and Island Highway (24).

Parksville: Alberni Highway and Inland Island Highway (47).

Port Alberni: Gertrude and Johnston (63).

Ladysmith: Davis and TCH (51).

Chemainus: Henry and TCH (42).


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