The Top 5 Most Dangerous Intersections in Victoria BC
Victoria BC has some great roads. Epic, really. From winding coastal roads to mountaintop vistas to leafy tree-lined streets, your new favorite drive is just around the corner.
But…we also have some really awful roads. So bad, in fact, that 7 out of the top 10 crash intersections on Vancouver Island are located right here in Victoria. The helpful folks over at ICBC compiled some stats on these intersections, including how many crashes happened at each one in 2013.
Here’s a rundown of our fine city’s most dangerous spots for drivers:
#5. Burnside Rd W & Tillicum Rd
Here, you have all sorts of drivers and they don’t always get along. There are people just coming off the highway, people heading to the highway, impatient commuters trying to avoid the Douglas St. crush, mall shoppers who are in no hurry whatsoever, and the occasional parent who can’t find the Little League field. You’ll see every speed and every disposition, not to mention an endless stream of pedestrians to brake for. Not pretty.
#4. Blanshard St & Saanich Rd
This intersection is nuts for several reasons. One, it’s a handy place to sneak over to Douglas St. when you’re driving home from downtown. Two, it’s right next door to Uptown. Three, there are multiple turning lanes, which always seems to confuse people (the ol’ turning into the proper lane idea). And four, it’s on major bus routes, so there are pedestrians galore. There’s a lot to look out for here and it goes without saying that drivers aren’t always careful.
#3. Burnside Rd E @ Douglas St
On one hand, you have a left-hand turning lane that’s awkwardly sandwiched in the middle of Douglas St, the major artery that connects the downtown core to the rest of Greater Victoria. And on the other, you have a right-hand turn onto this major artery, with merely a yield sign to guide you. Add to the mix a few dozen pedestrians and a few dozen cars who found themselves in the turning lane by accident, and you have yourself a recipe for disaster.
#2. The Millstream Mess
The official ICBC description of this location makes no sense, but what it boils down to is all of those onramps and offramps connecting Millstream Road and Veterans Memorial Parkway to the Trans Canada Highway. If you’ve ever driven these roads between 4 pm and 6 pm on a weekday, you know exactly how crazy they can be. And if you’ve even driven these roads on a weekend, you know that Costco traffic is just as bad as commuter traffic.
In other words, these intersections are busy at the best of times. Be careful.
#1. Admirals Rd & Mckenzie Ave @ Trans-Canada Hwy
This congested intersection is the #1 reason why traffic gets backed up to the Malahat and beyond. It’s where the Colwood Crawl turns into the Saanich crawl—think lots of yawning and coffee drinking. It also marks that point in the commute where drivers start to worry about whether they’re going to make it to work on time, and that doesn’t exactly say “safe driving.”
Tips for making it through these intersections unscathed
Avoid them – Obviously, the best way to steer clear of accidents at these intersections is to avoid them altogether. You may even find that it’s faster to take a different and less-traveled route (one with fewer lights, hopefully).
Take advantage of flexible workdays – If your job allows you to start early and end early, do it! You’ll not only save time on the drive home, but also have a much safer journey.
Make sure your car is prepped for the season – From rain and fog to the occasional ice and slush, Victoria has it all. Read up on safe seasonal driving and bring your car into a quality auto repair shop to make sure it’s equipped to handle whatever the weather throws its way. Don’t forget about things like proper tire inflation, clean headlights, new wiper blades, winter tires, a brake inspection, and generally taking the time to properly maintain your vehicle.