HALIFAX – Winter weather is the likely cause for a rash of car accidents in the Halifax-area, said police.
On Thursday Halifax Regional Police said officers responded to 16 accidents during the day and the RCMP said it had responded to six. But that number doesn’t include the crashes reported to the collision reporting centre after the fact, if those were counted Staff Sgt. Julia Cecchetto said the number would be much higher.
One man was killed following an accident on Highway 101 early Thursday morning, said RCMP while the rest didn’t lead to any serious injuries. There were no serious injuries from the accidents that Halifax Regional Police attended, said Staff Sgt. Cecchetto. However, the accidents did cause damage and disruptions in traffic.
Many accidents involved multiple vehicles. One on Highway 118 during the morning rush hour involved 5 cars.
Another at Burnside Dr. and Wright Ave. involved a Canada Post van and a pick up truck. The Canada Post vehicle ended up against a traffic sign with its airbags deployed.
Police said the higher than normal number of accidents is likely due to changes in road conditions following Tuesday’s blizzard. The freeze and thaw cycle of the last few days makes the roads more slick for drivers, leading to longer stopping distances.
“Conditions of the last couple days have been tricky,” said Cecchetto. “It was fairly icy last night, and then today with the warming up it caused almost slucsh like conditions. And of course slush will pull you and prevent you from stopping in a timely manner.
“We’ve had a good winter so perhaps we just weren’t quite used to this yet.”
The glare from the sun can also reduce visibility said Cecchetto.
“Today we did have one car-pedestrian (accident) and that’s attributed to the bright sunlight reflecting off of the wet pavement, the driver was unable to see,” he said.
A 13-year-old girl was struck in a marked crosswalk in that accident, but sustained minor injuries.
A truck on Old Guysborough Rd, east of the airport, ended up on it’s side in the ditch after police said the driver lost control on a turn.
Police are asking residents to slow down and be aware of the conditions on the road before they start their trip. Reducing speed by ten to 20 kilometres is a good place to start, said Cecchetto.