Enforcement, targeted legislation, awareness efforts helped lower the numbers
Saskatchewan recorded 71 road fatalities in 2019, the lowest since the province started keeping track of the numbers in the 1950s. The previous year, 2018, saw 129 deaths.
The lowest number on record is 73 from back in 1951. In the 10 years before 2019, Saskatchewan averaged nearly 140 road fatalities per year, the province said in a press release.
“This number makes it clear that many Saskatchewan people have decided that it is no longer acceptable for this province to hold a different record, and one that we held not that many years ago, where we had the highest number of road fatalities in Canada,” said Joe Hargrave, minister responsible for Saskatchewan Government Insurance. “I want to thank all Saskatchewan residents who are working to make our roads safer.”
SGI reported in August 2019 that fatalities and injuries caused by traffic collisions in the province are decreasing, particularly those caused by impaired driving, distracted driving, speeding and improper seatbelt use. The province said that more enforcement, targeted legislation and powerful awareness efforts help lower the numbers, but it is ultimately up to the drivers to make “good decisions.”
“When people make the decision to drive safely, it literally saves lives,” SGI president and CEO Andrew Cartmell said. “If you are one of the drivers who still chooses to take risks like texting while you’re driving, driving when you’re impaired or driving at unsafe speeds, you are now in the minority. We ask you to change your habits and become part of making this the province with the safest roads in Canada.”
The province also has one message for all drivers: Take care out there.