'How many more crosses are we going to put up?': Calls for change to Parkland County intersection
A Parkland County intersection known as the "death trap" or the "devil's intersection" for how many fatal crashes it causes claimed another person's life this week, with residents continuing to push for a redesign.
A line of memorials and crosses line the median and ditches surrounding where Range Road 20 and Highway 16A meet west of Edmonton.
On Wednesday, a 22-year-old woman was killed in a two-vehicle crash around 1:35 p.m. — one year and a day after the last fatal collision in the same area.
Bryan Kwasnycia's daughter Jade, a fourth-year education student who regularly volunteered in the community, died as she tried to cross Highway 16A.
"It's been really hard for us," Kwasnycia said. "It basically brought our world to a halt. We are just learning to deal."
"We knew that intersection," he said. "My uncle was in an accident there. My wife was actually in an accident there. There's been school buses hit in that intersection."
"I was just about in an accident there," he added. "A very near miss."
In fact, school buses are no longer permitted to use that intersection, with drivers having to go half a kilometre to use Range Road 15 instead, Kwasnycia says.
Keshia Korrall, an area resident, was the first person at the scene on Aug. 2 last year where another fatal accident occurred.
"A lot of the first responders were showing a lot of anger, and they said they had just been there the week before, and that they got at least one to two accidents there a month," Korral said.
"It made me really upset," she said.
That crash killed 25-year-old TJ, a construction worker and cabinet maker. Tim Holmes, his father, described him as a loving and uplifting man with a big personality.
"It was very difficult," Holmes said. "To know that's the incident that now the rest of your life will never be the same."
"With TJ's passing, at the time, I didn't have anger," he added. "But I'll tell you when I found out about this accident that happened (this week), God bless the family, I was angry.
"I was angry with the situation, that it happened (again)... to another family."
- Falling power lines prevented rescue in fatal 2-vehicle crash west of Edmonton
- Two people sent to hospital after collision on Hwy 16A
- Highway 16A west of Edmonton clear after downed power line
Korrall became an advocate pushing to get that intersection redesigned to prevent further families from being upended, starting a petition with more than 2,800 signatures and a Facebook group of 1,300 members.
"I just got a hold of the minister of transportation and just kept pushing and pushing," Korrall said. "They have done some changes, but obviously not enough that it's going to help anything."
Kwasnycia, who has lived in the area since he was six years old, says the intersection is deadly because of limited visibility.
Highway 16A eastbound arrives at the top of a hill to meet Range Road 20, he added, offering motorists of either roadway no time to react.
"It's so dangerous," Kwasnycia said. "Everyone around here knows."
"Because of the angle of it, as soon as you move you are there. Neither driver has a chance of reacting.
"When I go, and my family goes, we try to square up to the intersection to get a double look."
Korrall agreed, saying some people just outright avoid it.
- Petition started to change dangerous intersection west of Edmonton after fatal accident
- STARS called to collision on Hwy 16A
- Police investigate two-vehicle crash near Stony Plain
'OF SIGNIFICANT CONCERN'
Allan Gamble, Parkland County mayor, told CTV News that the intersection had been a "high collision area" for years.
"It is of significant concern to Parkland County," he said. "We continue to be concerned about the safety of this highway and intersection, and we call for the provincial government to address these safety issues."
At every meeting with the province, Gamble said he reiterates the need for changes to the intersection.
"There are a number of range roads that tie to the highway for access, and with the increasing population and the increasing traffic along Highway 16A, it's more important now more than ever that we advocate to the provincial government," Gamble said.
"To provide the infrastructure necessary, so our residents do not have to cross that highway," he added.
Gamble believes adding merge lanes or changing the speed limit could help address safety concerns in the short term but would want to have actual service roads collect area traffic toward overpasses to prevent crossing several lanes of Highway 16A.
"We work alongside the province, but the ultimate responsibility lies with the province and the minister of transportation."
'WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING'
Haydn Place, acting chief of staff to Transportation Minister Prasad Panda, told CTV News in a statement that the ministry is "currently reviewing options" for the intersection, including complete relocation.
"Near-term safety improvements, including an 'Important Intersection Ahead' sign with flashing lights, an oversized 'checkerboard sign,' and improved lighting have been undertaken at this intersection," Place said.
"Preliminary data shows the number of collisions has decreased after installing the 'Important Intersection Ahead' sign in 2018," Place added.
Between 2014 and 2018, there were 48 crashes occurring at or within 300 metres of the intersection, excluding off-road and collisions with animals, Place says.
Of those, 28 involved injuries and 21 were damage-only crashes with no fatalities.
RCMP provided CTV News Edmonton with collision data from Jan. 1, 2018, to Aug. 4, 2022. During that period, there were 38 collisions, including two fatal crashes, 24 with non-fatal injuries, and 12 with vehicle-only damage.
For Korrall, those extra signs do "nothing," since collisions with injuries and fatalities continue to happen.
"We have to do something," Korrall said. "This is enough."
"The frustrating thing is the province knows about it, the county knows about it, transportation knows about it," Kwasnycia said. "How many more crosses are we going to put up at that intersection before they do something?"
Holmes wants the province to take action sooner rather than later, no matter the cost.
"Whoever is making these decisions, (they need) to really put it in perspective of putting themselves at risk and what this (intersection) is taking," Holmes said. "You've got to do something."
"I don't want any more people to have this feeling," he added. "If you can do something to make change, whoever is making these decisions, please make them."
"You can't put an amount of money on a person and a family's life."
With files from CTV News Edmonton's Alex Antoneshyn and Jessica Robb
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Former U.S. president Donald Trump sued CNN for defamation on Monday, seeking US$475 million in punitive damages and claiming the network had carried out a 'campaign of libel and slander' against him.
BREAKING | North Korea fires missile over Japan
North Korea on Tuesday fired an intermediate-range ballistic missile over Japan for the first time in five years, forcing Japan to issue evacuation notices and suspend trains, as the North escalates tests of weapons designed to strike regional U.S. allies.
CTV News has declared The Quebec Liberal Party will retain its official Opposition status.
The mysterious woman who allegedly lured dozens of migrants on Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis' flights to Martha's Vineyard from San Antonio has been identified by several media outlets as a former combat medic and U.S. Army counterintelligence agent living in Tampa.
CTV News has learned Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be called to testify about his government’s decision to invoke the Emergencies Act in response to anti-mandate Freedom Convoy protests in February.
A B.C. MLA who bought and sold properties three times over the last four years is speaking out against a proposed flipping tax designed to discourage real estate speculation in the province
Toys 'R' Us has released a list of the top toys of 2022 ahead of the holiday season.
Appearing before the House of Commons Finance Committee on Monday, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland defended the government's response to Canadians' affordability concerns as 'focused' and fiscally responsible. With the passage of the GST rebate-boosting bill through the House all but a foregone conclusion, Freeland was peppered with questions from opposition MPs on a range of topics, including inflation.
Police say that as the city is coming up on a record number of shootings in a single year, they are finding it more difficult to make arrests in the incidents.
A 30-year-old Calgary man wanted on dozens of outstanding warrants has been arrested and now faces an additional 32 charges, following an investigation spurred by tips from the public.
More revelations are coming out tonight about how Hockey Canada has set aside money to deal with outstanding sexual assault claims.
A taxi driver took the witness stand in a Saskatoon murder trial on Monday morning.
The wheels were put in motion on Monday to replace a vital piece of medical equipment for women in rural and remote areas of Saskatchewan.
Although levels remain high, the team of researchers monitoring Saskatoon's wastewater supply has measured a drop in signs of COVID-19.
This month SGI is cracking down on dangerous driving behaviours, including street racing and stunting.
The sister of a Yorkton man who was murdered in 2018 said she has forgiven the four people connected to his death.
The Government of Saskatchewan has made its opinion clear on a proposed federal buy-back program of over 1,500 models of firearms.
Residents of Prince Edward Island said Monday they're growing exhausted, anxious and cold as thousands remained without power nine days after post-tropical storm Fiona swept through the region.
Ten days after Fiona knocked out trees, roofs and power, much of what came down still needs to be picked up. In Nova Scotia's Pictou County, crews are running in repair lines but many residents are running out of patience.
A power crew in Cape Breton went above and beyond their duties after a memorial plaque attached to a power pole was torn down during post-tropical storm Fiona.
The Ontario government has released proposed regulations for its so-called ‘strong mayor’ legislation that reveal when a veto can be used.
Gas prices in Ontario are projected to jump by 10 cents later this week, industry analyst Dan McTeague tells CP24.
Ontario education workers have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a strike if negotiations with the province continue to stall but many parents and school staff may be wondering what comes next.
CTV News has declared The Quebec Liberal Party will retain its official Opposition status.
Quebec solidaire spokesperson Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois was re-elected in his Gouin riding. Manon Masse was also re-elected in Sainte-Marie-Saint-Jacques.
The councillor representing Sandy Hill says cancelling the annual Panda Game between the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees and the Carleton Ravens won’t stop the party from spilling into residential streets.
Ottawa police say six young people are facing charges following an attack last month near a local high school, video of which was widely shared on social media.
Parents in Waterloo region are expressing mixed emotions after members of the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) voted in favour of strike action.
Waterloo Mayor Dave Jaworsky issued a letter to students to thank those involved in the Wilfrid Laurier University’s annual Homecoming weekend.
The Guelph Police Service said one person sustained a minor wound to his arm after an “unprovoked” stabbing in the University of Guelph Arboretum.
For the time being, there will be no overdose prevention site coming to North Bay.
A new initiative to illustrate the growing diversity of Timmins includes a series of videos to foster a welcoming and inclusive community.
Winnipeg police have stopped an attempt to enlarge an encampment on the front lawn of the Manitoba legislature.
A recent spike in gas prices has Winnipeggers feeling pain at the pumps but the latest jump comes despite the price of oil remaining relatively steady.
WARNING: This story contains details that may be disturbing. The Winnipeg Police Service is asking the public for any information regarding the homicide of a woman who died of severe burns.
A number of eager British Columbians have managed to schedule a fall booster of the COVID-19 vaccine without an invitation – though officials stress that protecting the most vulnerable remains their priority.
The families of two women and a teenage girl, all Indigenous, who went missing and then died in the Lower Mainland have come together in an effort to raise awareness about their loved ones and push for systemic change in B.C. policing.
During the first Question Period of the fall session, the BC Liberals outlined a list of health-care woes they say is evidence the health minister needs to go.
B.C. woman acquitted of failing to provide breath sample because police did not make demand 'immediately'
A B.C. judge has acquitted a Vancouver Island woman of failing to provide a breath sample because police waited several minutes before asking her to blow into an alcohol-screening device after they suspected she was impaired. The judge also found "obvious inconsistencies in the police evidence" in the case.
A Vancouver Island eatery has been named the best fine dining restaurant across all of Canada for 2022, according to travel website Tripadvisor. The restaurant, Pluvio, is located in Ucluelet, B.C. and has an ever-changing menu that incorporates seasonal and local ingredients, many of which are harvested on Vancouver Island.
The British Columbia government says inmates struggling with mental health and substance use will be supported after they leave jail by transition teams connected to all 10 of the province's correctional centres. Mental Health and Addictions Minister Sheila Malcolmson says that's an increase from inmates at five facilities getting help with services like housing, health care, transportation and treatment when they are released.