How many will die in Surrey?
TWO fatal accidents on Calgary’s light rail transit system should serve as a wake-up call for Surrey residents on the safety and reliability implications of the proposed ground-running LRT, says the organization SkyTrain for Surrey.
On the same day, two separate incidents on Calgary’s C-Train LRT system caused the deaths of a ‘panicked’ six-year old girl and another man after they were hit by a train. In both of the incidents, C-Train service was shut down in both directions for several hours while police investigated. Hundreds of commuters were left scrambled, confused and frustrated as they faced delays and had to find shuttle buses or alternate means of transportation.
The Calgary Herald said: “By 2003, 35 people had already been killed. Today’s total is close to 80. Suicide may account for a third of those, but that in itself is a mark of a system that makes it so easy.”
SkyTrain for Surrey said: “Throughout our years of advocacy, we have emphasized that a rapid transit backbone built on street-running, ground-level trains would pose serious implications in both safety and reliability. The proposed on-street alignment introduces the possibility of collisions and accidents, which could affect perceptions of safety and reliability – as well as ridership – on a Surrey LRT system.
“With only a few days until the election, it’s critical that citizens use this chance to act. A fully grade-separated extension of SkyTrain will not only bring higher time savings and attract more riders, it will not be prone to fatal collisions that can cost peoples’ lives and stop commuters in their tracks. Today we are urging residents, decision-makers and other stakeholders to recognize that street-running, ground-level trains in Surrey will be an enormously expensive mistake.”