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Road Safety & Vision Zero Plan

salsa

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The legal process is still incredibly inconvenient when you kill a pedestrian...

David Rider@dmrider
39 mins ago
So that's where we're at. Families of dead pedestrians & cyclists r lucky if motorist shows up to get their fine. https://www.thestar.com/news/pedest...accidents-often-punished-with-small-fine.html

Jones’s legal representative pleaded guilty on her behalf to unsafely leaving a Markham roadway, reduced from careless driving, in August 2013. A justice of the peace fined her $500. Case closed.

It never crossed Davis’s mind the driver could stay home. Her family did know, though, that the violent death of a fit, loving 63-year-old cyclist — who had met his grandson the day he was born and returned the next with a photo of him on his T-shirt — would be reduced to a minor traffic violation.

“The charge was no different if she hit a mailbox, or nothing, or killed my dad,” Davis says. “There’s no part of the charge that relates to the outcome, which is the crazy part.”
How to kill someone and get away with it: use a car.
 

ADRM

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I wonder how many fewer people would've died on Toronto streets (and sidewalks) had the city never been amalgamated.
 

44 North

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I think it's time to re-evaluate and lower the speed limits. I'm not even really saying this to reduce severity of pedestrian collisions, but because I believe there to be untapped potential for reducing gridlock. No more racing to red lights doing combinations of 60-0-60 or 0-60-0. A slow and steady 20 or 30km/h allows for proper merging at bottlenecks and overall smoother flow through. The added benefit is a) reducing severity of collisions and b) singling out aggressive drivers (who more often than not are not "aggressive", rather stupid/novice/immature).
 

steveintoronto

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I wonder how many fewer people would've died on Toronto streets (and sidewalks) had the city never been amalgamated.
That's an excellent question, and supplementary to that and this string is a very surprising article in tomorrow's UK Guardian:
Contrary to popular belief, busy city centres beat suburban living when it comes to human wellbeing, as socialising and walking make for happier, healthier people, according to a new report.

Downtown residents – packed together in tight row houses or apartment blocks – are more active and socially engaged than people who live in the sprawl of suburbia, according to a report that aims to challenge popular beliefs about city life.

Its authors said their findings should encourage politicians to promote the benefits of built-up city living.

“If we can convince policy makers that this is a public health opportunity, we can build well-designed communities, and in the long term you have made a big difference in health outcomes,” its co-author Chinmoy Sarkar told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.

“With evidence, we can plan multi-functional, attractive neighbourhoods that promote physical activity, promote social interaction, and shield from negatives such as pollution and feeling unsafe.”

The study – by Oxford University and the University of Hong Kong (UHK) – showed that in 22 British cities people living in built-up residential areas had lower levels of obesity and exercised more than residents in scattered, suburban homes.

“As cities get more and more compact, they become more walkable. In denser residential areas they are better designed and more attractive destinations. We are less dependent on our cars and use public transport more,” he said.

Sarkar, assistant professor at UHK, said policies and planning needed to catch up with the data, rather than relying on urban myths about what makes cities work.

The study showed that areas of suburban sprawl with about 18 homes per hectare – such as poorly designed neighbourhoods near motorways, where driving is the only option – had the greatest rates of obesity and lowest rates of exercise.

Suburban areas with few homes – often privileged communities with big gardens and open spaces – were healthier than this but lagged behind the most densely populated areas in inner cities.

Walking made the biggest difference, said Sarkar, and social interaction and physical activity thrived best in compact communities. [...]
https://www.theguardian.com/society...akes-for-healthier-happier-people-study-finds

Initially, this will ring hollow to many Cdn cities, lip-service besides. Even the US is ahead in many cities in implementing the 'Zero-Plan', but there's a twist to this story:
The "Thomson" in "Thomson Reuters Foundation" now owner of Reuters, Canadian (although HQ in London, UK) and owns the Globe and Mail, albeit by sharing a common parent (Woodbridge Corporation).

Watch for the Globe to tie the dots together on this as it relates to Toronto. There are conflicting allegiances however...Tory is their man.

Meantime, reference for US cities:
https://www.citylab.com/transportat...rand-experiment-emerges-on-us-streets/385679/

From the above link:
[...]On the engineering side, for instance, the plan includes redesigned streets, timing for signals that better protects pedestrians at some intersections, and the elimination of right turn on red in certain key locations. [...]
"and the elimination of right turn on red in certain key locations" And that is key to 'Green Boxes' working or not for cycling. US practice is to block right turns on red with a 'Green Box' in an intersection. Canadian practice? (Fed, Prov and City of Toronto) "May ban right turns on red". US practice states: (gist) "Must".

I have the literature, will quote, itemize and reference in the cycling forums. Be very careful in thinking that those implementing 'cycling infrastructure' in this city have it right.

Toronto's roads are dangerous compared to many other first world cities, even when 'separate cycling infrastructure' is provided.
 
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W. K. Lis

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AlvinofDiaspar

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From "Vision Zero" to "zero accountability"
Like honestly - my water bottled dropped and I flattened a lady and her dog. What kind of BS excuse is this. It's like - I brought a sharp knife, ran around the block and stabbed someone to death accidentally. Do you think that will get you off the hook? But as a driver, you bet.

From the Star:

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/20...ewalk-and-killed-pedestrian-on-dundas-st.html

https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/20...-driving-become-a-criminal-action-keenan.html

Pathetic.

AoD
 
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WislaHD

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Clearly driving is one of the few avenues to kill without ever having to suffer the consequences:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/gideon-fekre-sentenced-1.4412121

AoD
Well, it is at least not as bad as in other countries.

In Venezuela, you serve only a few months in jail if you kill someone while driving drunk, as opposed to years if sober. The logic of the law is, you were not in full control of your actions if you were under the influence of alcohol.

But, at least there you are still serving time vehicular manslaughter, unlike in Canada apparently.
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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Well, it is at least not as bad as in other countries.

In Venezuela, you serve only a few months in jail if you kill someone while driving drunk, as opposed to years if sober. The logic of the law is, you were not in full control of your actions if you were under the influence of alcohol.

But, at least there you are still serving time vehicular manslaughter, unlike in Canada apparently.
Somehow using Venezuela as an illustrative example of anything seems like a bad idea. On the other hand, in the current state 6 months in a Venezuelan jail is probably deadly.

AoD
 

Northern Light

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While finding the above decision undesirable (though consistent w/the law as adjudicated), I am very uncomfortable w/the notion that lots of jail time is the answer.

I don't know this young man, but all other things being equal,what he did was incredibly stupid and lethal, and should have consequences, but, was not intentional.

I'm not a fan of jails. I think their essential purpose is less about punishment or even justice that is protection against the next offense.

The answer, in this case, to me, is clearly to deprive this young man of the privilege of driving until such time as he can demonstrate a much greater degree of competence at it.

By all means tack on some other 'punishment' such as paying for the funeral/burial, community service etc.

But jail and a criminal record don't really fix what's wrong; nor do they make anything better for the person whose life is lost or her family.

They just serve to make someone unemployable; and to be advised by a lawyer not own up to their serious mistake and apologize, lest that prejudice the legal outcome.

This young man did something awful, I assume, without meaning to, I would hope and trust he feels awful about it, and know that isn't enough; but nothing ever will be.

The courts mandate should be to find what is in the best interest of society.

The law should accord more room for that.

****

As a secondary note, I think this is a caution that we don't require formal driver training to pass a license exam. AND we don't make use of simulators which can illustrate, real-world, risk-free, to a prospective driver the consequences of intoxication, distraction or ill-weather in terms of ability to drive and risk of accident.

I think we are due to address the above.
 

WislaHD

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Somehow using Venezuela as an illustrative example of anything seems like a bad idea. On the other hand, in the current state 6 months in a Venezuelan jail is probably deadly.

AoD
Aha, I used to live in the country, hence my bringing it up. :p

Commiting vehicular manslaughter while drunk was a favourite method of placing a hit on someone for the narco-mafia there. Send your henchman to do it, he is back in your service in 4-6 months.

But, the take-away should be, we are waaaay to lenient with the legal consequences of driving than we should be in Canada. (edit: Not that jailtime is inherently the superior means of punishment, as @Northern Light brings up)
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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Aha, I used to live in the country, hence my bringing it up. :p

Commiting vehicular manslaughter while drunk was a favourite method of placing a hit on someone for the narco-mafia there. Send your henchman to do it, he is back in your service in 4-6 months.

But, the take-away should be, we are waaaay to lenient with the legal consequences of driving than we should be in Canada. (edit: Not that jailtime is inherently the superior means of punishment, as @Northern Light brings up)
When driving is framed as a right and not a responsibility, it is no wonder we get drivers who couldn't drive.

AoD
 

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