It’s so ironic that Senkulmen Business Park is well lighted where nobody lives, yet Gallagher Lake just down the road is so dark and hazardous for pedestrians.
Ten months ago a 46-year-old resident died instantly when she ran across the highway and was struck by a vehicle. There was no street light then, and no street light now.
This area is extremely dark at night and needs better lighting so motorists can see pedestrians who may be contemplating crossing the roadway. Thankfully, the Ministry of Transportation is planning to install a light next spring. That will definitely improve the situation, but may not be enough. A crosswalk and new 60 km/h zone (with signs) would be ideal, and is something that residents are fighting for to prevent future tragedy.
With the recent completion of the McIntyre passing lanes, residents report that motorists are flying through the community faster than ever. Will it take another fatality to improve safety in this area? Maybe.
The Ministry of Transportation is never quick to install a crosswalk or stop light unless the statistics show it’s warranted. And these statistics are partly based on accidents and fatalities. As harsh as it may sound, sometimes it takes more deaths to bring about change.
Gallagher Lake business owners and residents have been calling for action for months, armed with petitions for a pedestrian-operated crosswalk.
We support this wholeheartedly.
The other issue that concerns us is the reported lack of communication between the regional district and business owners during construction of water/sewer works on Gallagher Lake Frontage Road.
Several business owners claim they were not consulted about the impact to their operations. And they may not see any reimbursement for lost revenue. If you were a business owner there, wouldn’t you be upset?
The newly constructed intersection where the highway meets the frontage road could have been better designed. It can be challenging for large vehicles such as fire trucks and school buses to make a smooth transition from the highway. This is another accident waiting to happen.
The bottom line is Gallagher Lake is not as safe as it should be. The ministry needs to step up and seriously address residents’ concerns before another tragedy befalls this community.