Statistical Review

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Canada

The following tables show the national statistics as reported by Transport Canada.

Exhibit 5.1- Fatal Collisions Where a Vehicle Hits an Animal – Canada
 

  Fatal Collisions
Province 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Alberta 2 1 2 2 0
British Columbia 2 0 1 2 3
Manitoba 0 0 1 2 0
New Brunswick 4 4 1 4 2
Newfoundland 0 3 1 2 2
Nova Scotia 1 0 0 3 0
N.W.T. 0 1 0 0 0
Ontario 5 7 4 8 4
P.E.I. 0 1 0 0 0
Quebec 6 5 2 6 6
Saskatchewan 1 2 0 3 0
Yukon 0 0 0 0 0
TOTAL 21 23 12 32 17

Source: Transport Canada, Road Safety Directorate

Exhibit 5.2 - Collisions Where a Vehicle Hits an Animal – Canada

        Collisions with Non-Fatal Injury
Province 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Alberta 150 160 166 185 12
British Columbia 185 236 276 316 345
Manitoba 158 160 199 159 214
New Brunswick 125 117 104 85 106
Newfoundland 78 62 56 70 62
Nova Scotia 79 105 82 69 47
N.W.T. 4 3 3 1 2
Ontario 562 585 569 610 596
P.E.I. 12 9 7 5 9
Quebec 275 330 383 363 435
Saskatchewan 129 117 123 140 164
Yukon 4 3 7 6 6
TOTAL 1,761 1,887 1,975 2,009 2,003

Source: Transport Canada, Road Safety Directorate

Exhibit 5.3- Collisions Where a Vehicle Hits an Animal – Canada

        Collisions with Property Damage Only
Province 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Alberta 4,430 4,672 4,098 5,487 353
British Columbia 709 931 1,465 1,741 1,998
Manitoba 2,755 2,658 3,213 3,218 3,971
New Brunswick 948 876 893 806 786
Newfoundland 295 336 315 364 312
Nova Scotia 798 770 688 573 432
N.W.T. 13 10 12 20 16
Ontario 9,026 10,503 11,248 12,894 14,018
P.E.I. 12 23 16 13 14
Quebec 5,978 6,082 5,456 6,075 6,256
Saskatchewan 1,987 1,936 3,604 5,780 9,564
Yukon 26 29 41 37 34
TOTAL 26,977 28,826 31,049 37,008 37,754

Source: Transport Canada, Road Safety Directorate

With the exception of 2003, the national statistics show a significant increase in the number of animal-vehicle collisions. As per previous analysis on this subject, this increase does not translate into more fatalities. The number of fatal collisions in fact decreases significantly in 2003.

Alberta

The data shows nevertheless some signs of peculiarities as far as provincial figures are concerned. The data for the province of Alberta seems inconsistent especially when looking at collisions with property damage, where only 353 collisions were reported in 2003 compared to 5,487 in 2001. The same can be said of the two other categories: fatalities and injuries. The provincial data obtained from the Province of Alberta shows the following statistics:

Exhibit 5.4- Alberta - Animal - Vehicle Collisions* 1999-2003

Severity of Collision 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Fatal 5 2 5 5 6
Injury 273 262 346 324 299
Property Damage 8,799 9,604 11,061 11,120 11,318
Total Collisions 9.077 9.868 11,412 11,449 11,623

Source: Alberta Infrastructure and Transportation
* Includes wild and domestic animals but more than 95% of the animals involved are wild animals

The data for the Province of Alberta shows that the provincial database is more than double the number of collisions shown in the national statistics. One explanation for this discrepancy appears to be found in the “data dictionary” submitted by Transport Canada to the provinces. The data presented by Transport Canada appears to only capture the collisions with damage estimated at a $1,000 minimum, whereas the Alberta data depicts all the collisions reported in Alberta irrespective of the amount of damage.

The Province of Alberta has a system in place whereby a vehicle involved in a collision receives an “insurance sticker” before going to a garage to be fixed. It would appear that most mechanics accept for repair only the vehicles with these stickers as they fear that without that sticker they may not get paid.

The above explanation can only partially explain the differences between Transport Canada data and the ones from that Province. The difference in the number of collisions with fatalities cannot really be explained.

We will now look at other Provincial databases and continue to compare the national statistics to existing provincial databases.

Newfoundland & Labrador

Exhibit 5.5 - Newfoundland Animal-Vehicle Collisions 1999 - 2003
 

Year 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Total Collisions 356 378 353 397 363
Collisions with Injury 99 76 64 80 87
Collisions with Fatality 0 2 1 2 2

Source: Newfoundland & Labrador Ministry Department of Environment and Conservation

Exhibit 5.6- Newfoundland Animal-Vehicle Collisions 1999 – 2003
RCMP and Conservation Officers Reports

Year 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003
Collisions as reported by RCMP 356 378 353 397 363
Collisions based on RCMP + Conservation Officer reports combined 685 622 718 805 706
Difference 329 244 365 408 343

Source: Newfoundland & Labrador Ministry Department of Environment and Conservation

The data from Newfoundland shows that the reportable collisions matched closely the national database. Only when all collisions are factored in, is there is a discrepancy between the national database and the provincial database. In fact, the number of reported collisions almost doubled. Again we are confronted with the same phenomenon as in Alberta whereby motorists are required to report all collisions to the RCMP that result in injury or incur more than $1,000 in vehicle damage. Many people simply do not bother reporting collisions with damages less than that amount.

Other facts regarding Newfoundland:

  • Newfoundland animal-vehicle collisions are mostly moose-vehicle collisions.
  • Generally speaking, moose-vehicle collisions are a serious threat to motorists and moose as they cause injury and death.
  • Only 16.0% of collisions reported to RCMP resulted in injury of any kind, the majority of these being minor. Of all accidents reported to RCMP and Conservation Officers, only 8.0% of the collisions led to reported injuries.
  • On average, only 2 people are killed every year in these collisions.
  • According to government sources, 89% of moose die at the scene.

Nova Scotia

The Province of Nova Scotia is well known for its huge deer population. The collision data from provincial sources show the following statistics:

Exhibit 5.7 - Nova Scotia Deer-Vehicle Collisions 2001-2003
 

Year Fatal Injury Property Damage Only Total
2001 1 74 638 713
2002 1 55 514 570
2003 0 33 364 397

Source: Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Public Works

Nova Scotia’s data seem to be in line with the national statistics and the differences between the table above and the national tables may be related to other species such as moose and black bears.

Prince Edward Island

PEI indicated that they do not have a major problem with any large wild animals and they do not collect statistics other than those for Transport Canada.

Quebec

The Ministry of Transport in Quebec has been addressing the issue of animal-vehicle collisions for the past 10 years. They have developed measures aimed at reducing the number and severity of the collisions and their efforts have been concentrated in some particular regions within the Province of Quebec. These efforts have meant that the ministry collects data for those regions. The following statistics are extracted from reports produced by the ministry for those specific regions. Therefore, it does not cover the entire province but only part of it.


The statistics below cover the following regions with their estimated length of highway network:

  • Bas-St-Laurent-Gaspésie-Îles-de-la-Madeleine – 3,651 kms
  • Capitale-Nationale (Quebec city area) – 1,629 kms
  • Chaudière-Appalaches – 2,777 kms
  • Côte-Nord – 2,086 kms
  • Mauricie-Centre-du-Québec – 2,866 kms
  • Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean-Chibougamau – 2,332 kms

At the time of completing this report, the statistics were only available for the period 1996 to 2000. A report covering the period 2001 to 2005 will be published later in 2006. It will nevertheless allow us to compare data for two years, i.e. 1999 and 2000.

Exhibit 5.8 - Quebec Regions Animal-Vehicle Collisions
 

Year Deer Moose Bear Caribou Total
1996 1,195 236 8 0 1,439
1997 1,256 210 23 1 1,490
1998 1,640 310 30 1 1,981
1999 1,900 300 41 0 2,241
2000 2,454 297 58 1 2,810
Total 8,445 1,353 160 3 9,961

Source: Ministère des Transports du Québec

Exhibit 5.9 - Quebec Regions Animal-Vehicle Collisions by Severity

  1996 1997 1998 1999 2000
Fatalities 4 3 1 4 3
Injuries 80 59 113 111 129
Property Damage 1,355 1,428 1,867 2,216 2,678
Total 1,439 1,490 1,981 2,241 2,810

Source: Ministère des Transports du Québec

The statistics from the Province of Quebec show no particular discrepancies when compared to the data published by Transport Canada.

Ontario

The same situation prevails for Ontario. There are no significant discrepancies between the data published by Transport Canada and the data available from the Ministry of Transportation of Ontario. This does not mean however that the number of animal-vehicle collisions is not underrepresented.

Exhibit 5.10 - Ontario Animal-Vehicle Collisions by Severity
 

Year Fatal Injury Property Damage Only Total
1997 5 403 7,309 7,717
1998 3 394 7,803 8,200
1999 4 466 8,390 8,860
2000 6 506 9,826 10,338
2001 4 482 10,565 11.051

Source: Y.M. Elzohairy, C. Janusz, & L. Tosca, Characteristics of Motor Vehicle-Wild Animal Collisions: An Ontario Case Study, Transportation Research Board, 2004

Ontario data indicate that less than 0.1 percent of animal-vehicle collisions are fatal, 4.8 percent of all reported animal-vehicle collisions are non-fatal injury collisions, and over 95% of all reported animal-vehicle collisions are property damage only (PDO) collisions.

The same report also provides useful information regarding animal-vehicle collisions in Ontario and the type of roads on which they occurred.

Exhibit 5.11 - Ontario Collision Severity by Road Characteristics, 2001
 

Road Characteristics Fatal Injury Property Damage Only Total %
Undivided One-Way 0 4 171 175 1.6
Undivided Two-Way 4 423 9,375 9,375 9,802
Divided with Restraining Barrier 0 24 337 361 3.3
Divided 0 31 626 657 5.9
Ramp 0 0 22 22 0.2
Collector lane 0 0 5 5 0.0
Express lane 0 0 12 12 0.1
Transfer Lane 0 0 1 1 0.0
Other 0 0 16 16 0.1
Total 4 482 10,565 11,051 100

Source: Y.M. Elzohairy, C. Janusz, & L. Tosca, Characteristics of Motor Vehicle-Wild Animal Collisions: An Ontario Case Study, Transportation Research Board, 2004

The same study provides other interesting statistical facts:

  • The number of animal strikes on Ontario roads has increased from 7,389 in 1996 to 11,051 in 2001. This represents a 50 percent increase over a 6-year period.
  • Approximately one out of every 21 collisions that occur on Ontario highways involves a wild animal venturing onto the highway.
  • Motor vehicle-wild animal collisions have claimed 42 lives in the past eight years.
  • High numbers of animal-vehicle collisions were found during the months of October to December, with November being the month with the greatest number of motor-vehicle wild-animal collisions.
  • Most wild animal collisions occur during early morning (5am-7am) or after sunset (5pm- 11pm).
  • With 719 vehicle-animal collisions reported in 2001, the Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton has had a consistently higher number of wild animals collisions than any of the other 53 counties in Ontario.

On the subject of the Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton, the region shows the following statistics over a eleven-year period:

Exhibit 5.12 - Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton Animal – Vehicle Collisions 10-Year Period 1994-2004
 

  1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 Total Avg.
Total deer collisions 261 241 355 469 475 509 629 680 817 944 917 6,297 575.5
Fatal 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0.1
Injury 4 8 8 16 17 17 17 11 29 23 32 182 16.5
Property Damage 257 233 347 453 458 492 612 669 788 921 885 6,115 555.9

Source: City of Ottawa, Transportation, Utilities and Public Works Department, 2006

Exhibit 5.13- Exposure Data - Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton
 

  Deer Collisions Population Collisions/Population Ratio * Registered Vehicles Collisions/Reg Veh Ratio **
1994 261 707,500 0.37 384,764 0.7
1995 241 719,000 0.34 380,186 0.6
1996 355 730,000 0.49 378,109 0.9
1997 469 741,000 0.63 384,681 1.2
1998 475 750,000 0.63 396,048 1.2
1999 509 765,000 0.67 413,892 1.2
2000 629 780,500 0.81 430,547 1.5
2001 680 790,000 0.86 441,625 1.5
2002 817 881,500 1.01 441,169 1.9
2003 944 828,693 1.14 445,120 2.1

Source: City of Ottawa, Transportation, Utilities and Public Works Department, 2006

Exhibit 5.14- Regional Muncipality of Ottawa-Carleton Proportion of Animal-Vehicle Collisions

Muncipality 2003 Deer Collisions 2003 All Collisions Deer Collisions as a Percentage of All Collisions
West Carleton WC 203 21.5% 469 3.2% 43.3%
Goulbourn GO 82 8.7% 337 2.3% 24.3%
Rideau RI 91 9.6% 274 1.8% 33.2%
Kanata KA 99 10.5% 818 5.5% 12.1%
Nepean NE 156 16.5% 2,178 14.7% 7.2%
Ottawa OT 7 0.7% 7,717 52.0% 0.1%
Vanier VA 0 0.0% 279 1.9% 0.0%
Osgoode OS 98 10.4% 308 2.1% 31.8%
Gloucester GL 158 16.7% 1,837 12.4% 8.6%
Cumberland CU 50 5.3% 634 4.3% 7.9%
Total   944   14,851   6.4%

Source: City of Ottawa, Transportation, Utilities and Public Works Department, 2006

Exhibit 5.15 - Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton Deer Collisions as a Percentage of All Collisions

Exhibit 5.15 - Regional Muncipality of Ottawa-Carleton Deer Collisions as a Percentage of All Collisions

Source: Source: City of Ottawa, Transportation, Utilities and Public Works Department, 2006

The above exhibits and figures show the statistical characteristics of the problem in an area where animal-vehicle collisions are an issue. As can be seen, for some areas around the City of Ottawa, deer-vehicle collisions are a serious issue and represent a large proportion of the road collisions for that area.


Manitoba

The province of Manitoba has a public no-fault insurance system. Although the data collected by Manitoba Public Insurance covers all collisions, some may be excluded because not all car owners have full coverage for damage to their cars. When they purchase their insurance coverage, car owners have the option to choose their deductible for damage to their vehicles.

The Manitoba data show a difference between provincial data and Transport Canada data.

Exhibit 5.16 Manitoba Animal-Vehicle Collision Claims 2001 –2003
 

Year Total Claims Claims with Fatality Claims with Injury Claims with Property Damage Only (PDO) Average Costs from Collisions with PDO
2001 9,389 2 238 9,141 $1,617
2002 9,262 0 251 9,011 $1,701
2003 10,804 0 277 10,527 $1,818

Source: Manitoba Public Insurance

Saskatchewan

As we have seen for the province of Manitoba, when a province has a full public insurance regime in place, some data discrepancies can be expected between the provincial data and Transport Canada’s database. Saskatchewan is no different in this respect. The data obtained from Saskatchewan Government Insurance shows that there are some data discrepancy issues between data obtained from the province of Saskatchewan and the national database.

Exhibit 5.17 Comparison of Wildlife-Vehicle Collisions in Saskatchewan According to:
Traffic Accident Information System (
TAIS) and SGI claims 1996-2004

Year Total Collisions (TAIS) Collisions with Injuries Collisions with Fatalities Collisions with Property Damage Only SGI Claims Related to Animal Collisions
1999 2,228 190 1 2,037 9,998
2000 2,205 196 2 2,007 10,645
2001 3,860 189 0 3,671 11,775
2002 6,112 209 2 5,901 11,514
2003 9,960 229 1 9,730 13,966


Source: Saskatchewan Government Insurance

The discrepancy shown above in Exhibits 5.16 and 5.17 illustrates the different data collection methodologies existing in Canada. While the Transport Canada data collection (TAIS) efforts are on the number of collisions where wild animal action was a contributing factor in the crash and the damage often exceeds $1,000, organizations like MPI and SGI focuses on all claims.

British Columbia

As for British Columbia, the data provided by the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) showed the following trends.

Exhibit 5.18 British Columbia Animal-Vehicle Collisions
 

Year Collision Counts Injured Victims
2002 9,300 330
2003 9,100 280

Source: Insurance Corporation of British Columbia

As was the case for Manitoba and Saskatchewan, and for the same reason stated for these two provinces, the number of collisions shown for British Columbia is much more than was shown in Transport Canada national statistics.

The available data shows that there are some discrepancies in the data between Transport Canada and provincial databases. These differences continue to point towards an under-reporting of the number of animal-vehicle collisions in Canada. At the same time, the differences can probably be bridged by a change in the data dictionary being asked of the provinces. We have at least four provinces that appear to capture the total count of animal - vehicle collisions. For those provinces, the data reflect the true number of collisions. The comparisons of databases also showed that on the issue of collisions with fatalities and collisions with injuries, the gap between provincial databases and the Transport Canada database is very small.

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