The RM that contains the intersection where the collision between the Humbodlt Broncos’ team bus and a semi-trailer happened is calling on the province to add rumble strips.
The RM of Connaught voted to write a letter to the province that suggested they make the improvement to the intersection of Highways 35 and 335 at a council meeting April 9.
Dale Poggemiller is a councillor for the RM. He said they talked about various safety measures before deciding to focus their lobbying on rumble strips on the east and west sides of the intersection.
“We know that the rumble strips help, especially at Melfort when you come into Melfort from Tisdale and Saskatoon,” he said. “I think they get the driver’s attention right away and realize, ‘holy [shoot], something’s coming up here,’ if they’re not paying attention.
Data from SGI reports that between 1994 and 2017, there were six collisions at the intersection. Two of those only resulted in property damaged, three of those caused injuries to a total of four people, and one, in 1994, resulted in six deaths.
Ian Boxall is also a councillor. He had said on Twitter that he would lobby for improvements to the intersection. When he talked to the Recorder, he said he wanted to make it clear the intersection was good, especially compared to others.
“It’s got oversized stop signs, it has red flashing lights on the east and the west. The trees in the yard, when you stop at the stop sign, don’t impede your vision.”
He said he wants the province to look at the safety features of all intersections across the province so that this doesn’t happen again.
“I would just ask that maybe we have a conversation moving forward on solutions going forward,” he said. “If putting rumble strips saves one life in the province, it’s worth the money, right?”
Poggemiller said he’d also like to see the province reduce the speed limit on Highway 335 before the intersection.
According to data collected by the provincial highways ministry in 2016, on an average day, approximately 1,200 vehicles got through the intersection on Highway 35 north or south-bound, while approximately 550 vehicles travel east or west on Highway 335. The busiest stretch of highway in the Northeast is Highway 3 between Tisdale and Melfort, with 2,645 vehicles travelling the route daily.