The Surrey RCMP detachment has released video of a hit-and-run that left two people injured, the latest development in what was a dangerous week for pedestrians across B.C.
The Surrey incident occurred Monday night. Two women were jogging through a crosswalk in the 3200-block of 152nd Street when they were struck. One of the women was airlifted from the scene and remains in hospital with serious but non-life-threatening injuries. The other woman was also taken to hospital, but her injuries were less severe and she has since been released.
The video, shot by a roadside camera, shows a white crossover vehicle making a left turn directly into the women. The vehicle then leaves the scene. The women remain alone on the road for about 30 seconds, before another driver stops to help. A fire truck can be seen arriving about six minutes after the women were struck.
Corporal Bert Paquet, a Surrey RCMP spokesman, urged the driver to contact police.
"Our investigators are making great progress in this case and we would like to remind the driver involved that it is never too late to do the right thing," he said Wednesday. "It is always better to approach the police than have the police approach you."
The months of November and December, when it gets dark earlier, are typically dangerous for pedestrians in this province. The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia says there is, on average, an 80-per-cent increase in crashes in which a pedestrian is injured, compared to July and August. In the Lower Mainland specifically, ICBC says the average number of crashes in which a pedestrian is injured doubles.
Several pedestrians have been struck in the last week, and the Vancouver Police Department recently issued a hit-and-run plea of its own. In that incident, a mother of two was walking home from work Sunday night when she was struck at the intersection of East 43rd Avenue and Prince Edward Street. She died in hospital.
A young woman was killed after an accident at the intersection of Kingsway and Joyce Street on Nov. 27, but Vancouver Police have said there are indications she was crossing on a green light. An elderly man died that same day, 21/2 weeks after he was hit at the Vancouver intersection of East Georgia and Renfrew Streets. Neither of those incidents was a hit and run.
Three pedestrians were struck at different North Vancouver crosswalks on the evening of Nov. 28, although none of the injuries were considered serious. The crashes prompted North Vancouver RCMP to urge drivers and pedestrians to be extra vigilant.
ICBC issued a similar statement Wednesday.
"At this time of year, it's more important than ever for drivers to slow down and be prepared to stop for pedestrians," said John Dickinson, ICBC's director of road safety. "Pedestrians should use designated crossing points only, make eye contact with drivers and add reflective gear to clothing whenever possible. We want to help prevent these tragedies so we're urging drivers and pedestrians to use extra caution during these dark, fall weather conditions."
ICBC said drivers should scan left and right for pedestrians when approaching an intersection. The Crown corporation says drivers should also be aware of pedestrians who are unsure or not paying attention.