RSA Canada steps up Toronto pedestrian road safety warnings

TORONTO, March 28, 2017 /CNW/ - With a tragic increase in the number of pedestrians killed on Toronto's streets in the past three consecutive years, leading Canadian home and auto insurer RSA Canada says both drivers and pedestrians have a role to play in reducing collisions.

Statistics from Toronto Police Service show that both fatal and non-fatal pedestrian car collisions have increased over the three year period between 2014 and 2016.

The 2016 statistics show 1,958 pedestrians were injured as a result of being hit by vehicles, compared to 1,906 in 2014 and 1,905 in 2015.

Tragically, fatal pedestrian collisions also increased year over year, from 31 deaths in 2014 to 39 deaths in 2015 and 43 deaths in 2016 – a 32 per cent increase over the three year period.

"The fact that these figures are increasing year after year is an alarming trend," says RSA Canada spokesperson Brodie Bott.

"Whether walking or driving to work, it's important both motorists and pedestrians slow down, exercise extra caution around busy city streets and sidewalks, and prioritize pedestrian safety," Bott says.

"If you're behind the wheel, be extra careful around high pedestrian areas like the downtown core, or other high volume foot traffic areas like shopping centres, restaurants and entertainment districts."

RSA Canada has these tips to help pedestrians and drivers stay safe on roads and sidewalks:

Pedestrians:

  • Cross only at marked crosswalks or traffic lights. Cross only when the traffic has come to a complete stop and only when the 'walk' signal begins. Never cross on a red light.
  • Focus on surroundings and not on phones or mobile devices.
  • Watch for traffic turning at intersections or turning into and leaving driveways.
  • Make sure drivers see you before you cross. If the driver is stopped, make eye contact before you step onto the road.
  • Wear highly visible clothing or reflective strips, especially when it's dark out.

Drivers:

  • Always be on the lookout for pedestrians when behind the wheel, especially in built-up areas.
  • Slow down when driving through school zones, residential areas, or any other area where children could be walking or playing.
  • Keep an eye out for Community Safety Zone signs that signal where public safety is a concern.
  • Allow seniors or pedestrians with disabilities more time to cross the road.
  • Take care around public transport and drive carefully near streetcar stops. Pass streetcars at slow speeds and always be prepared for pedestrians to make sudden exits onto the roadway. At streetcar stops, stay at least two metres behind the rear doors where passengers are getting off or on. [http://www.mto.gov.on.ca/english/dandv/driver/handbook/section2.7.7.shtml]

Safe, secure world is a strategic theme in RSA's Corporate Responsibility strategy aiming to keep people safe in their daily lives – on the road, in the water and in their homes and businesses. Our products and services help make communities safer places to live, work and travel.

For more information about RSA Canada, visit www.rsagroup.ca or check us out on Twitter at @RSACanada.

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About RSA:
With a 300 year heritage, RSA is a multinational quoted insurance group.  Focusing on general insurance, RSA's core markets are the UK & Ireland, Scandinavia and Canada, with the capability to write insurance business across the globe.  RSA's core businesses have approximately 13,500 employees with net written premiums of £6.3 bn in 2016.

About RSA Canada:
The RSA Canada group of companies includes Roins Financial Services Limited, Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada, Quebec Assurance Company, Johnson Inc., Unifund Assurance Company, Western Assurance Company, Ascentus Insurance Ltd., Canadian Northern Shield Insurance Company and RSA Travel Insurance Inc. (collectively, "RSA Canada") and is part of RSA Insurance Group Plc. RSA Canada employs more than 3,000 people across Canada and is one of the oldest insurance companies in the country with roots dating back to 1833.

©2016 Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada. All rights reserved. RSA, RSA & Design and related words and logos are trademarks and the property of RSA Insurance Group plc, licensed for use by Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada. RSA is a trade name of Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance Company of Canada.

SOURCE RSA Canada

For further information: Brodie Bott, communications manager, RSA Canada, media@rsagroup.ca

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http://www.rsagroup.ca/

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