The superior design of expressways such as Highway 404 in Toronto should not result in a fatal impact to a bridge pillar. Yet, from the scant description provided by the OPP on their Twitter account this is what reportedly occurred. The collision likely occurred in the last few hours, perhaps in the early morning hours of March 26, 2020, and its specific location has not been identified.
The OPP description noted “SB vehicle entered centre ditch, went airborne and struck bridge support”. On a modern expressway that should contain large traffic volumes, Highway 404 should contain barriers that control the motion of vehicles entering a “centre ditch”. Such barriers and other roadside features should not cause a vehicle to go airborne. And those who designed Highway 404 should have created protections from impacts to immovable objects such as bridge pillars. This is an unsafe situation that should be documented by the OPP no different than if they had encountered an impaired, speeding or distracted driver.
Ensuring the public’s safety does not mean that we only capture armed bank robbers in green shirts. We capture all bank robbers regardless of what colour of shirt they are wearing because the colour of the shirt should be irrelevant. On that basis the OPP need to be protecting the public from all road safety risks, not just selected ones.