News release

2008 Highway Fatalities Down Over Last Year

There was a 16.2 per cent decrease in the number of Nova Scotia highway fatalities last year compared with 2007.

In 2008, there were 76 fatal collisions that caused 83 fatalities in Nova Scotia, compared with 79 fatal collisions and 99 fatalities in 2007.

"The department has worked hard to implement new measures and to use our resources to improve highway safety across Nova Scotia," said Murray Scott, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. "'We know there is more work to be done, and we will continue to work with Nova Scotians, law enforcement and other road safety partners, with the goal of preventing deaths and injuries on our roads."

In 2008, the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal implemented various road safety measures, including a ban on hand-held cellphones and text messaging while driving, the Alcohol Ignition Interlock Program for people who lost their diver's licence because of an alcohol-related conviction or an alcohol-related incident on their driving record, toughening consequences for people caught driving with a blood alcohol level of 0.05 or more, and doubling the fines for speeding in work zones.

The department also paved about 475 kilometres of roads during the 2008 construction season, improving driving for all Nova Scotians. The department is on track to meet its four-year plan to pave 2,000 kilometres of roads across the province.

As part of the department's commitment to improve Nova Scotia roads, more than $100 million is expected to be invested over the next few years in twinning Highway 104 and constructing a new section of highway near Antigonish. To date, nearly $66 million has also been invested in twinning and upgrading Highway 101.

"My thanks and gratitude go out to our staff who have helped in improving road safety in Nova Scotia," said Mr. Scott.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

There was a 16.2 per cent decrease in the number of highway fatalities last year compared with 2007.

In 2008, there were 76 fatal collisions in that caused 83 fatalities in Nova Scotia, compared with 79 fatal collisions and 99 fatalities in 2007.

Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal Minister Murray Scott says he knows there is more work to be done, and the department will continue to work with Nova Scotians, law enforcement and other road safety partners, with the goal of preventing deaths and injuries on our roads.

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Media Contact:

Patricia Jreige
Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal 902-424-1750 E-mail: