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Since 2002, there has been a 32 per cent decline in crash-related deaths, from 90 to 62 in 2011. There was also a 12 per cent decrease between 2010 and 2011. Numbers are also decreasing province-wide; for the first time ever, the province will be below 300 deaths in 2011.

Traffic Services believes part of the decline can be attributed to changing the way they do business. Around 2002, it moved to a strategic, intelligence led enforcement, education and engineering program, instead of just focussing on how many tickets are given out per day. Officers started looking at what was causing death and injury and found a few trends.

To start, not using a seat belt was one of the main contributors to death or injury, and Traffic Services say that seat belt enforcement and changing driver behaviour has improved numbers. Part of Traffic Services’ new strategy is also targeting aggressive driving, which includes speeding and unsafe or illegal passing. It will continue to use aircraft enforcement to help catch those drivers.

In addition to the changes implemented by Traffic Services, improved safety features, infrastructure changes and new legislation are all contributing to the declining number of deaths and injuries. The introduction of Immediate Roadside Prohibitions in 2010 is being lauded as decreasing deaths from impaired driving by almost 40 per cent across the province.

North District Traffic Services will continue all of the strategies they’ve implemented, as well as focus on the rising number of drug impaired drivers and distracted drivers who text and drive.

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