ICBC's Games time tips for North Central region

How to enjoy a safe 2010 Winter Games

VANCOUVER, Feb. 11 /CNW/ - The countdown is on! North Central area residents are about to welcome some of the 250,000 visitors expected for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games. Some residents may be planning their own trips to attend the Games. One thing is for sure - the roads are going to be busier than ever with extra vehicles, taxis, buses and pedestrians.

While ICBC is well prepared to deal with the anticipated increase in claims in February, there are some important things to keep in mind. Here are ICBC's top smart driving tips for the Games period:

    
    -  Be a good host: This is our chance to be good hosts and display smart
       driving skills by slowing down and keeping our distance from other
       vehicles - drivers and pedestrians unfamiliar with our roads may need
       a bit more space. Set an example by being courteous and patient - your
       smart driving decisions will be appreciated and can have a significant
       influence on others.

    -  Plan your trip: If you're heading to the Lower Mainland, plan your
       trip ahead of time. Road closures, significantly reduced on-street
       parking and tens of thousands of more pedestrians are going to be a
       reality that will make driving more challenging. To plan your commute
       visit travelsmart2010.ca and the City of Vancouver's website:
       olympichostcity.vancouver.ca.

    -  Protect yourself from auto crime: While auto theft numbers in B.C. are
       at a six-year low, more visitors can lead to more opportunities for
       auto thieves. If you're heading to the Lower Mainland, we encourage
       you to use transit during the Games whenever possible. If you need to
       drive part of the way to an event, then park at one of the 22 official
       Park & Rides locations. Wherever you park, aim for open areas that are
       well-lit and near significant pedestrian activity. Once parked, take
       some steps to also protect yourself from vehicle break-ins. While it's
       important to remove any valuables from your car - such as travel
       documents, event tickets or other personal possessions - you should go
       a step further and remove everything from your vehicle, even bags with
       nothing valuable in them.

    -  Check your coverage: You may need to update your vehicle use,
       territory and coverage if you're working as a volunteer during the
       Games; if you plan to rent out your vehicle; if you plan to rent or
       borrow someone else's vehicle or have guests that will be driving your
       vehicle. Talk to your Autoplan broker about your situation and
       insurance coverage. If you have out of province guests who are
       bringing their own vehicle, be sure to remind them to review their
       coverage with their insurance company or agent back home prior to
       arriving in B.C.

    -  Record the details: If you're unfortunate enough to be in a crash and
       it's with a non-resident, it's important that you record as much
       information as possible to help your claim go smoothly. Record the
       licence plate of any other vehicles involved, along with the driver's
       address and phone numbers (including their temporary contact details
       while in B.C.), email address and, most importantly, the name of their
       insurance company and their policy number. ICBC's At the scene of a
       crash claims card can help you recall the pertinent information you'll
       need. The cards are available from Autoplan brokers, ICBC claim
       centres or can be downloaded
http://www.icbc.com/claims/How-claim/claims_card.pdf.

    -  Be a role model: Set an example with your smart driving decisions and
       remember that in B.C., drivers are not permitted to talk, type or dial
       on any hand-held device while driving. Only hands-free cellphones and
       devices that require one touch to activate are allowed. Visit
       drivecellsafe.com for more information and tips.

    -  Party safely: The 2010 Winter Games will be a party the likes of which
       we have never seen before, but it's important that we all have a good
       time responsibly. If you're drinking, help make these the safest
       Winter Games possible by making sure you and your guests have safe
       rides home - encourage the use of transit, designated drivers and have
       taxi numbers on hand. It's also possible to have a lot of fun without
       alcohol - a hot apple cider, a smooth and creamy Kootenay Koffee or a
       tart and tingling Lemon Fizz are fun and easy-to-make mocktail treats.
       For these quick and simple recipes, go to 
http://www.icbc.com/road-safety/safer-drivers/drinking-driving/mocktails.
    

For many more tips on how to enjoy a safe 2010 Winter Games on the road, visit icbc.com/on_road_2010/.

SOURCE ICBC

For further information: For further information: Media contacts: Alyson Gourley-Cramer, (250) 561-5006

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