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Proposed changes to motor vehicle act will improve road safety

The BC government is introducing a new bill aimed at improving road safety for all users and supporting active transportation.

Rob Fleming, minister of transportation and infrastructure, said in a news release the new legislation would make sure drivers take caution around densely populated areas.

“The legislation requires drivers to use appropriate care around pedestrians and cyclists,” he stated. “It also supports enforcement of regulations, and sets a strong foundation for testing and evaluating new technology and policies.”

The changes are part of the government’s Clean Transportation Action Plan, which will be released later this year, enabling more modes of transportation in the hopes of shifting more people away from cars.

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The release stated the plan is a roadmap to reduce emissions by increasing the sharing of trips made by active transportation to 30 % which will decrease greenhouse gas emissions, in transportation, by 27 to 32 %.

Minister of Environment and Climate Change George Heyman said the province has to address the emissions given off by vehicles if the province is going to benefit from a cleaner, greener environment in the future.

“These amendments will create a safer environment for all road users,” Heyman stated.

“Transportation accounts for 40 % of our annual greenhouse gas emissions.

“Reducing these emissions will have a wide range of benefits, from cleaner air and less congestion to better health and walkable, accessible communities.”

The new bill proposes amendments including establishing a new vulnerable road-user framework that requires drivers to take proper precautions when pedestrians and cyclists are using a roadway.

The legislation would also enable the province to regulate automated vehicles, including licensing, insurance, prohibition, and permitting.

With files from Justin Baumgardner (MyNelsonNow.com staff)

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