Deaths up on eastern Ontario roads

EASTERN ONTARIO – As the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) looks toward Canada Road Safety Week, it is reporting an increase in road fatalities as well as the leading behaviours linked to the deaths, which are the very focus of the national campaign.

As of May 4, 71 people have died in fatal collisions on OPP-patrolled roads. This time last year, there were 61 deaths.

“While speed is linked to the highest number of fatalities (17 this year), inattentive-related deaths (12) have seen the most significant spike and are up 300 per cent over last year,” the OPP released in a statement yesterday (May 11).

All other leading traffic fatality causal factors are up, as are fatal collisions and pedestrian deaths:     

OPP traffic data 2020-2019 change:

  • Number of fatal collisions up 63 from 57 (10.5%)
  • Persons killed up 71 from 61 (16.4%)
  • Speed-related fatalities up 17 from 15 (13.3%)
  • (Lack of) seat belt-related fatalities up 15 from 12 (25%)
  • Inattentive-related fatalities up 12 from 3 (300%)
  • Alcohol/drug-related fatalities up 12 from 10 (20%)
  • Pedestrians fatalities up 14 from 8 (75%)

“Drivers need to carefully consider the main behaviours and actions that are linked to the many lives lost on our roads every year,” OPP Chief Superintendent, Commander, Highway Safety Division Rohan Thompson said. “Fatigue and prescription drug use are forms of impaired driving. Aggressive driving isn’t just about speeding, it includes tail-gaiting and other unsafe maneuvers. Distracted driving isn’t just about cell phones, it’s also about programming your GPS or eating behind the wheel. Safe drivers mean safe roads. Drive like your life depends on it, because it does.”

During Canada Road Safety Week (May 12 to 18) the OPP is joining police services across Canada, ensuring drivers and other roads users are helping to keep roads safe.

A total of 335 people died in 304 fatal collisions on OPP-patrolled roads in 2019.

The OPP responded to 74,771 collisions last year, marking a five-year high.

Canada Road Safety Week supports Canada’s Road Safety Strategy 2025.