MPI wants you to keep road safety dialed in this long weekend

As you prepare for the long weekend ahead, MPI wants you to stay aware on the roads.

As you prepare for the long weekend ahead, MPI wants you to stay aware on the roads.

According to Manitoba Public Insurance records, 90 people are injured over the holiday weekend, with six per cent of those resulting in death.

Historically, Friday has been the most dangerous day to travel during this time, with spikes around the very early morning times such as 3 to 4 a.m.

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Spokesperson Brian Smiley says they believe this is because this is the first day of the long weekend and more people are on the road and are excited to get to their destination and may not be paying attention to speeds.

Last summer, there was a spike in collisions during the months when the COVID-19 restrictions were loosened between the first and second waves of the virus.

During this time, MPI concluded that 29 people were killed on public roadways in August and September 2020 — a 79 per cent increase compared to the previous five-year (2015-2019) average of 16 fatalities during these two months.

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“While we are all looking forward to getting back to regular summer activities with friends and family, we can’t forget about road safety,” MPI spokesperson Satvir Jatana said when this data was collected. “The increases in deaths and serious injuries we saw last summer can be avoided if we all commit to making better choices behind the wheel.

“We encourage all Manitobans to focus on road safety this summer, which means not driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol, keeping speeds within the posted limits, and putting down our phones so our attention is on the road at all times. After such a challenging year and a half, we all have the direct ability to help save lives this season through these simple actions.”

The number of people who were killed during collisions and were not wearing a seatbelt more than doubled in the months of August and September of 2020.

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Smiley told 680 CJOB that these fatalities are completely avoidable and people should be wearing seatbelts at all times.

“A person is more than 50 times more likely to be killed and almost four times more likely to be seriously injured when they’re not wearing a seatbelt. It takes one second to do up a seatbelt so there’s really no excuse.”

Some summer safety road tips from MPI

  • Don’t drive impaired. Both drugs and alcohol can affect a person’s ability to drive. On average, 25 people in Manitoba are killed yearly due to impaired driving.
  • Don’t text and drive. On average, 28 people are killed yearly in Manitoba in distracted driving collisions.
  • Drive within the posted speed limit or to weather conditions. On average, 20 people are killed yearly in Manitoba in speed-related collisions.

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