NEWS

Quebec coroner recommends safer intersections after pedestrian death

03/31/2015 01:17 EDT | Updated 05/31/2015 05:59 EDT
A Quebec coroner is recommending the City of Montreal make intersections safer for pedestrians, following the death of a 77-year-old woman who was run over by a truck last year. 

"I recommend the City of Montreal, in the context of urban development, take steps to make intersections as safe as possible for users, and especially for the most vulnerable users," wrote Coroner Jean Brochu as his sole recommendation in the report on the death of Huguette Bergeron.

Bergeron died after being hit and pinned under a truck as it turned left on a green light at the intersection of Bélanger Street and Châteaubriand Avenue in the Rosemont –​ La Petite-Patrie borough.

The truck driver claimed not to have seen Bergeron and a 71-year-old woman crossing the intersection.

Partway across the street, the light changed and the two women were struck as the driver began his turn.

The other woman suffered a serious head injury.

In his report, Brochu noted that there was no light for pedestrians at the intersection.

He said the two women probably had no idea how much time they had to make it through the intersection.   

The report says the city could make crossings safer by fixing the medians so pedestrians can cross safely at least to the half-way point.

It also says it would also help if the light for pedestrians lasted longer.

Calls for safer crossing

Bergeron's death last May was followed by calls to install crossing lights at a number of busy intersections.

Montreal resident Jennifer Srey began lobbying to have a special pedestrian light installed at one intersection, after her sister-in-law died in a similar traffic accident.

Srey says there especially needs to be more consideration for seniors in the planning of intersections.

"We have to take into consideration the fact that seniors often move with reduced mobility and therefore our streets need to take that into consideration, and our lights need to be timed appropriately," she said.

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