Saskatoon councillor wants guardrails at site of fatal crash on Circle Drive
A firefighter on scene at a head-on crash on Circle Drive on Jan. 15, 2021. (Chad Hills/CTV News)
SASKATOON -- A fatal crash on Circle Drive on Jan. 15 is igniting a call for barriers separating opposing traffic in the hopes of saving lives.
Ward 3 Coun. David Kirton campaigned on traffic safety in the fall election. As a former journalist in Saskatoon, he says he saw too many crashes which concerned him, then the issue “popped up again tragically on Friday” and he was reminded again.
“It took me back to when I was covering things like this. I remember seeing this happen before on this very same stretch of Circle Drive,” Kirton told CTV News.
A 24-year-old woman died following the crash along the stretch of Circle Drive between College Drive and Attridge Drive. A car and truck collided head-on in the northbound lanes. Two people in the northbound vehicle sustained non-life threatening injuries.
The crash is under investigation.
“Collisions are among some of the most complex and scientific investigations in policing, often involving the laws of physics and the principles of engineering. Our reconstructionists study the role of the driver(s), vehicle(s), roadway and surrounding environment. Because of the multitude of factors, these types of investigations are not generally quick,” Saskatoon Police Service spokesperson Kelsie Fraser told CTV News in an email.
Kirton says he is planning to informally bring the issue up at council later this week.
“If I have to start making more formal moves, that will probably start next week at City Council,” Kirton said.
Regardless of the statistics, he wants to see guardrails at the site of the crash.
I want to be able to be able to approach our city’s administration and this time I’d like to see them take the statistics and push them aside because we know that this has been happening on this stretch. I think we need to put a guardrail there. It’s happened enough there, and we’ve had loss of life there on this stretch of Circle Drive.”
A similar collision happened along this same stretch in 2016 when a vehicle also crossed the ditch and went into oncoming traffic, slamming into a Volkswagen Beetle killing a 70-year-old man.
The City of Saskatoon told CTV News in an email that administration has done work on this file with guardrail improvements made already.
The city also said on Twitter: “We are aware of this incident. Sections of Circle Drive have been identified to receive safety barriers from the Municipal Economic Enhancement Program."