The debate about how to improve the treacherously narrow and winding Malahat Mountain Highway on South Vancouver Island has been an on-going issue since its conception back in 1861 when it was built as a cattle trail, then up-graded to wagon-road status in 1884 and eventually paved in 1911 (Commission). Currently vital safety upgrades are underway such as concrete barriers to divide the road lanes and stabilization solutions for falling debris. The presence of physical law enforcement units on the highway to manage problems like cell phone usage, impaired drivers and vehicles that are ill equipped for weather conditions is a necessary and crucial part of maintaining safety on the Malahat (Unit). However, due to the fact that the Malahat is built on the side of a mountain, with sheer drop-offs on one side and rock cliffs on the other, there are very few spots from which law enforcement can enforce speed limits. Furthermore, the highway spans over many different municipalities, and enforcement suffers from jurisdictional issues (Rondeau). Speeding is a critical safety problem that is prevalent on the Malahat; reducing speeding by installing speed cameras will substantially decrease the amount of fatal accidents on the highway, as well as save precious natural resources and billions of dollars in taxpayers’ money.
There have been substantial government studies done to find solutions for the Malahat, ranging from double decking the highway to building bridges across the Sannich Peninsula inlet, all of which have serious environmental impacts, and are estimated to cost hundreds of millions to billions of dollars (Transportation). The twinning or double decking of the current highway would come with many...
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Reutter, Mark. "New Speed cameras will cost more, not less, from city's preferred vender." 19 April 2013. Baltimore Brew. Web. 10 October 2013.
Rondeau, Andrea. "Two-week crack down solves mystrey of Malahat crashes." 04 July 2007. Cowichan Valley Citizen. Web. 01 October 2013.
Transportation, Ministry of. "Trans-Canada Highway 1- Malahat Corridor study area Final Report." Not given July 2007. Web. 10 October 2013.
Unit, Constable from Intergrated Road Safety. Personal interview, getting opion on Malahat issues Linda Mather. 30 Sept 2013. Personal Interview.
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