Opinion

Not a time to get cocky

The downtown Nelson intersection where a woman was hit by a car on Friday. - Sam Van Schie photo
The downtown Nelson intersection where a woman was hit by a car on Friday.
— image credit: Sam Van Schie photo

The white coating over the city Monday morning makes it official: winter has arrived to the West Kootenay. For the next five months we can settle into the season that makes this part of the world extra special.

Outdoor lovers can taste the fresh tracks, kids have already taken their first sled runs down their favourite pitch and even the odd snowman appeared on neighbourhood lawns.

With the anticipation of another great winter comes responsibility and the need for extra attention on area streets and highways. You only need one season in this geography to understand we live in one of the trickiest winter driving maps in the nation. And though you may think you have it mastered, Mother Nature is unforgiving with even the most hardened winter driving veteran.

In this story you can read about a pedestrian accident in the downtown. Though the snow is not to blame (it happened Friday), it does shed light on just how serious the consequences of brief moments of failure on the roads can be.

Snow is not the only hazard over the next few months. Shorter days, freezing rain and the soon-to-come massive snowbanks also make life on our streets much more challenging.

The responsibility for cutting down on injury and death on winter roads rests with everyone. Not just drivers, but pedestrians need to be aware that extra attention is essential.

If you plopped untested winter drivers from Vancouver or Victoria onto Nelson area roads in mid-winter it would be total chaos. We all know our winter conditions and mountain terrain make us the best in Canada. But don’t let that go to your head. Please ensure this winter is one where tragedy stays out of the headlines.

 

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