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Traffic volumes down 30 per cent during early part of pandemic: report

There were over 4,700 collisions in the region in 2020 compared to over 6,900 in 2019
University/Ira Needles roundabout
File photo by Blair Adams

The latest collision report from the Region of Waterloo confirms there were way fewer vehicles on the road during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 2020 report shows traffic volumes were down by approximately 30 per cent, resulting in fewer crashes.

There were over 4,700 collisions that year, which works out to 2,500 fewer than in 2019.

Seven people lost their lives in crashes throughout the region in 2020. There were two fatal collisions the previous year.

Another 673 people were injured in the 4,715 crashes two years ago. 67 collisions involved pedestrians and 79 cyclists, both down from 2019.

Other findings from the report are:

- 75 per cent of collisions occurred at intersections.

- 5 p.m. was identified as the time of day with the highest number.

- Friday had the highest numbers of crashes.

- February was the month with the most.

- A rear end collision was the most common type.

- 1.59 per cent of crashes were alcohol-related. It was 1.31 per cent in 2019.

Based on the data, the region also ranks the top 100 locations that would benefit from collision countermeasures. Number one on that list is King Street and Bishop Street (Cambridge), followed by Hespeler Road at Maple Grove Road/Fisher Mills Road (Cambridge), Trussler Road at Cedar Creek Road (North Dumfries Township), King Street and Borden Avenue (Kitchener) and Fairway Road at the intersection that leads to Fairview Park Mall and Cineplex (Kitchener).

The roundabout with the most crashes in 2020 was Ottawa and Homer Watson in Kitchener (125), followed by Franklin and Pinebush in Cambridge (86), and Dundas and Franklin in Cambridge (56).

The region also points out that collisions on local roads occur less often on a per capita basis compared to the rate at which they occur on all roads in the province.

Blair Adams

About the Author: Blair Adams

Blair is the editor of CityNews Kitchener
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