The city of Williams Lake has asked for a speed review of the Toop Road intersection which was reconstructed in 2019.
In a letter dated July 22, 2021, Mayor Walt Cobb voiced the city’s concerns to Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.
Mayor Walt Cobb said there is an ongoing issue with transport trucks travelling on Highway 97 using their Jake breaks to slow down when the speed limits reduce from 90 kilometres and hour to 60 km/hr through the city.
“With no warning for red lights, vehicles are not given enough notice to apply their brakes in advance of this busy intersection,” Cobb said. “This causes a serious safety concern, especially for larger transport vehicles.”
The mayor said a ‘huge concern,’ is reports to the city of transport trucks needing to lay on their horns as they run through red lights.
Cariboo Regional District Area D director Steve Forseth also penned a letter dated July 12, 2021.
“Many of my constituents, north of Williams Lake, use the same intersection when coming to Williams Lake for such things like work, groceries, etc. and have concerns about traffic flow and speed in this recently constructed intersection and would welcome a review of the speed and other relevant factors in the Toop Road intersection area for better vehicle safety and traffic flow,” Forseth wrote.
Responding to Cobb through a letter dated Aug. 27, 2021, Fleming said ministry staff have confirmed the Highway 97 southbound meets the design requirements and provides adequate warning to vehicles to slow down from the sign with flashing warning lights and from the 60-kilometre speed limit sign located 500 metres before the intersection.
“For northbound traffic, the ministry has recently installed another 60-kilometre speed limit sign closer to the intersection to remind drivers.”
Fleming also said ministry staff will be working the local police to review the city’s concerns about vehicles speeding and running red lights.
If a resident ever notices a driver behaving unsafely, we recommend first contacting the local police, Fleming added. If a safety incident involves a commercial transport truck, CVSE would also appreciate hearing about it and has a tip line that can be reached at 1-888 775-8785 or at CVSEgeneralinquiry@gov.bc.ca.
“CVSE takes every allegation seriously and acts on every tip received. A licence plate number is not required,” Fleming noted.
Council received Fleming’s letter at the regular meeting Tuesday, Aug. 31 and Cobb said he hopes council will be able to discuss the issue with local ministry staff and find out what type of discussions ministry staff has had with the local RCMP.