Sûreté du Québec 2018 road report

The Journal file photo/Sûreté du Québec

The Sûreté du Québec (SQ) unveiled provisional data for its 2018 road safety report which reveals that the number of fatal collisions is decreasing in the territory it serves.

The year 2018 ended with a decrease in the number of fatal collisions, from 243 in 2017 to 235 in 2018. We also saw a decrease in the number of deaths for the same period; 268 deaths in 2017 to 253 in 2018.

Excessive speed: still one of the most common causes of fatal collisions

While the number of speed-related fatal collisions has dropped from 76 in 2017 to 72 in 2018, speeding still dominates the list of causes of fatal collisions. Indeed, this factor is among the probable causes of fatal collisions in more than 30 per cent of the cases in 2018, about one collision out of three.

Distracted driving in second place

Driver distraction (including cell phone use) is reported to be involved in 11 per cent of fatal collisions in 2018. Although police officers from the Sûreté du Québec issue more than 9,000 reports every year for mobile phone use while driving, distracted driving was the likely cause of 25 fatal collisions.

Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is criminal

Impaired driving with alcohol, drugs or a combination of both is the third most likely cause of fatal collisions with a slight decrease to eight per cent in fatal collisions in 2018.

Wearing a seatbelt, a simple gesture that saves lives

The non-wearing of a seatbelt was found in 45 victims, an increase of nearly double the number of deaths compared to 2017 when 23 people were not wearing a seatbelt. It is clear that the simple act of wearing the belt is directly related to the severity of the injuries in a collision.

Myth – Fatal collisions do not happen until the weekend or in the middle of the night

Contrary to popular belief, the vast majority of fatal collisions in 2018 occurred during the day. Nearly two-thirds of all fatal collisions occur between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Friday is the day of the week when there were the most fatal collisions. These statistics demonstrate the importance of being vigilant at all times.

Decrease in the number of road victims aged 16 to 24

The number of people aged 16 to 24 who died in crashes decreased 32 per cent from 57 in 2017 to 39 in 2018.

Road safety is everyone's business

Even if the SQ continues its efforts to improve the road report, this work cannot be done without the collaboration of road users and our many partners. The root cause of collisions remains, "the person behind the wheel." Drivers must adopt appropriate and courteous behaviour, thereby making the roads of Quebec safer for all users.

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