(ABOVE: Collision at Carp and Hazeldean on September 25, 2017. Photo via Wendy Wright / @wrightofwayCFRA)
Stittsville Councillor Shad Qadri says he’s asked the city’s traffic department to review resident concerns about the Carp-Hazeldean intersection. But if you read between the lines, it doesn’t look like this intersection is dangerous enough to warrant any immediate changes.
In his weekly newsletter published on Thursday, Qadri shared the most recent collision data available from 2015. The Carp-Hazeldean intersection had 10 reported collisions, ranking it 167th on the list of intersections with the most reported incidents. (By comparison, the intersection of Hunt Club and Riverside was the worst in the city with 60 collisions.)
Here’s how Qadri describes the program the City uses to assess potentially dangerous intersections and decide which ones to fix (emphasis is mine):
“The City’s Safety Improvement Program (SIP) identifies high collision locations, based upon police collision reports and traffic volumes. Engineering studies have found that locations that have a statistically over-represented collision trend, may benefit from engineering countermeasures. For example, if there are more left-turn collisions at a location, than other similar intersections, and these are found to be statistically over-represented, then it may be worthwhile to install a protected/dedicated left-turn phase.
If a collision trend is not over-represented, compared to other similar locations, then it is possible that a side effect of the intervention may create other problems that could result in a general decline in the safety of the location.
The SIP program recognizes that there are many locations across the City, that have over-represented collision trends, and uses it’s funding to address these locations as a priority. The SIP program is mandated to determine locations where the investment is likely to reduce the most collisions.”
A rough translation: There are lots of problem intersections in the City of Ottawa but not enough money allocated to fix them all. Unless there was a dramatic uptake in collisions at Carp-Hazeldean in 2016-2017, it won’t rank high enough to fit into the budget.
I guess this makes sense from a purely budgetary point of view, but it’s not exactly comforting from a safety perspective.
Or to put it more bluntly: It’s going to take a lot more accidents at this intersection before it gets fixed. (Or wait until sometime between 2020-2025 when Carp Road is scheduled to be widened.)
A QUICK SUMMARY OF THE COLLISION STATS
- In 2015 there were 10 collisions. Among Ottawa’s 955 intersections, it was ranked 167th, tied with 19 other locations.
- In 2014 there were 18 collisions. That was the 50th worst in the city, tied with 11 other locations.
Here’s a PDF summarizing the stats (you can enlarge by clicking on the arrows at the bottom of the panel). Usually this information would cost $108 for residents and journalists to access but thanks to Qadri publishing it on his web site, we can get it for free.