The BC Ministry of Transportation is testing a locally-made, high-tech solution to wildlife-vehicle collisions that could save lives on both sides of the road.
In a news release this week, the Ministry announced they were installing two wildlife detection systems on Highway 3 near Elko and Sparwood.
“About one in 25 crashes are caused by wildlife collisions often leading to fatal injuries of these animals and causing serious injuries to those in the vehicle as well as contributing to increased injury and collision claims,” Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone said. “Our government should always be looking at and implementing cutting-edge technology to keep costs low and make B.C. highways safer for both people and wildlife.”
The locations for the pilot project were selected due to their high deer and elk populations. Warning signs will begin flashing when a large animal approaches the roadway, advising drivers to slow down and be better prepared to avoid a collision.
The news release also notes that “the components of the systems were largely designed and manufactured in B.C., including the software which was developed in Victoria.”
Investment into technology that can prevent or mitigate damage to ecosystems, people, and non-human animals is one that will show positive results long into the future. Ministry of Transportation staffers should be applauded for promoting this pilot project – and we can’t wait to see the results.