Marked increases in 2016 Ontario deaths on and off the road

 OPP 2016 Annual Traffic Data Reflects Ongoing Poor Behaviours 

(ORILLIA, ON) – The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has firmed up its 2016 traffic data, which revealed increases in many fatality categories, including the most tragic snowmobile season in 14 years. The OPP is sharing the data publicly to raise awareness of the impact ongoing behaviours have on the number of deaths on Ontario roads, waterways and trails.    

 Motor Vehicle Collision Deaths (All data applies to OPP jurisdictions only)

 A total of 307 people were killed in motor vehicle collisions in 2016, marking a four-year high.

Persons Killed:    

2016 -307
2015 – 301
2014 – 290
2013 – 293

Every year, without exception, the majority of the fatalities are attributed to the “Big Four” main causal factors in road deaths. Three are linked to driver behaviour (aggressive, inattentive and impaired driving). The fourth (lack of seat belt use) applies to drivers and passengers.

These behaviours were responsible for 165 (more than half) of last year’s 307 deaths with little change over the previous year. 

Persons Killed   

2016- 307
2015 301

Persons Killed  – speed-related

2016 –  55
2015 – 63

Persons Killed  – inattentive-related

2016- 65
2015- 68

Persons Killed – alcohol/drug-related

 2016- 45
2015-  45

Collisions

The OPP investigated 67,372 motor vehicle collisions in 2016, down from 2015 (69,934 collisions).

Marking another four-year high are the 275 collisions that resulted in fatalities.

Fatal Motor Vehicle Collisions

2016-275
2015-262
2014-268
2013 254

Of last year’s crashes, 11,506 of them resulted in injuries. The majority (55,591) were property damage collisions with no injuries sustained, but these collisions came with a significant economic cost to Ontarians.             

Large Commercial Transport Trucks  

Last year saw little change in collisions involving large commercial transport trucks. The data is another stark reminder of the significantly greater threat these collisions pose when compared to those involving regular-sized vehicles.   

Collisions involving transport trucks resulted in more than three times the number of fatalities than those involving regular-sized vehicles – a statistic that holds steady from year to year. As was the case in 2015, the majority of those who died in last year’s transport truck collisions were occupants of other involved vehicles.  Many of these fatalities are attributed to the Big Four.     

Collisions Involving Large Commercial Transport Trucks  

Number of Collisions

2016 – 5,357
2015 – 5,381

Number of Fatal Collisions

2016- 57
2015- 56

Persons Killed

2016 – 67
2015 – 71

Number of Transport Truck Drivers Killed

2016 – 11
2015 – 10

Motorcyclists   

While last year marked fewer collisions involving motorcycles than in the previous year, there was little change in the number of deaths.   

The OPP responded to 749 motorcycle crashes in 2016 which resulted in 33 fatalities. Speeding and losing control continue to be common contributing factors.  

Motor Vehicle Collisions Involving Motorcycles

Number of Collisions

2016 – 749
2015 – 837

Number of Fatal Collisions

2016 – 31
2015 – 27

Persons Killed

2016 – 33
2015 – 35

Motorcyclists Killed

2016 – 31
2015-31

Motorcyclists, Drivers

2016 – 28
2015 – 27

Motorcyclists, Passengers

2016 – 3
2015 – 4

Pedestrians

Sadly, 2016 marked the highest number of pedestrian deaths in more than 12 years, with 39 deaths. There were 25 such deaths in 2015. The year 2009 was the last time the number exceeded 30.  

 Boaters / Paddlers   

2016 marked the highest number of marine deaths in three years, with 23 people dying in 19 incidents on OPP-patrolled waterways. Seven of last year’s fatal incidents involved non-motorized vessels (e.g. canoes, kayaks). 

Falling overboard was the primary cause in nine of the incidents. Capsized or swamped vessels were involved in seven of them and alcohol in eight of the incidents.

Every year, the majority of the victims are found not wearing a Personal Floatation Device (PFD). Last year, 19 of the 23 victims found with no PFD and in 2015, all of the deceased were found without one.

Number of Fatal Collisions/Incidents

2016- 19
2015 -16

Persons Killed

2016 -23
2015 – 18

Persons Killed – No PFDs (includes PFD not used correctly)

2016 – 19
2015 -18

Off-Roaders

It was a particularly tragic year for off-road vehicle (ORV) enthusiasts, with 22 deaths marking a ten-year high in 2016. More than half (13) of the incidents were alcohol-drug-related and nine of the victims were riding without a helmet. These two behaviours were a common theme in 2015 as well as in previous years.   

Number of Fatal Collisions/Incidents

2016 –  22
2015 – 14

Persons Killed

2016 – 22
2015 – 14

Persons Killed – Alcohol/drug-related

2016 -13
2015 – 6

Persons Killed – No Helmet

2016 – 9
2015 – 6

Snowmobilers

With the data just in for the entire 2016/2017 season, the OPP is reporting 26 snowmobile deaths, which is the highest number of lives lost since the 2003/2004 season.  There were 12 deaths in February alone. Speeding, driver inattention and losing control were primary causes in half of these deaths. Notably, 17 of the 26 victims were between 45 and 64 years old.

“Our traffic data is compelling evidence that poor, careless behaviour is at the core of the majority of the fatal collisions and incidents we investigate on roads, waterways and trails. Despite the hard facts, some people fail to grasp the magnitude of their role in preventing these senseless deaths. The OPP remains committed to changing these costly behaviours through robust enforcement and education campaigns. The rest is up to Ontarians.” – OPP Deputy Commissioner Brad Blair, Provincial Commander, Traffic Safety and Operational Support.