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ICBC warns about seasonal spike in pedestrian crashes​​

More than half of all pedestrian fatalities occur between October and January

Drivers are being urged to be extra alert for pedestrians - and for pedestrians to take extra care - as we enter the fall.

According to the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, more than half of all pedestrian fatalities in the province occur between October and January as the weather changes and daylight hours decrease.

“We're urging both pedestrians and drivers to do their part to keep our roads safe as daylight hours decrease and weather conditions change," Lindsay Matthews, ICBC vice-pr​esident of public affairs and driver licensing, said in a statement.

"Crashes involving pedestrians are highest between 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. every day when many of us are commuting home. It's important for drivers to leave their phone alone and for pedestrians to stay focused on what's going on around them." 

Distracted driving and failing to yield the right-of-way are the top contributing factors for drivers in crashes with pedestrians, with more than three-quarters of them occurring at intersections.

Drivers should take extra time to scan for pedestrians near transit stops and before turning at intersections, avoid distractions and be ready to yield.

Pedestrians can help stay safe by making eye contact with drivers, watching for drivers turning left or right at intersections, and using designated crosswalks.

ICBC and community policing volunteers will be handing out reflectors and safety tips in high pedestrian traffic areas across the province to help pedestrians stay visible.

This year's campaign features online advertising that reminds drivers: you see pedestrians when you really look for them.

Over the past five years, an average of 52 pedestrians were killed and 2,400 injured in 2,700 crashes each year across the province, with roughly 55 per cent of those fatalities occurring between October to January, according to ICBC statistics.

In the North Central region, 53 pedestrians were injured in 79 crashes every year on average.​