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07/24/2013

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gingerbeard

Truly a sad story. It sounds like the driver was impaired, really of no condolence to the families of the cyclists.

Denis Baldwin

If we go by the Google Map on Canadian Cyclist Fatalities prepared by Wendy Lucas, this brings us up to five cyclists killed in recent years on Hwy 17, which is mainly two lane without paved shoulders. Meanwhile on the Trans Canada Highway across Saskatchewan and Alberta, where there are wide paved shoulders there has been only one fatality. That one was caused by a drunk driver veering on to the paved shoulder near Brooks west of Medicine Hat. What more proof do we need that paved shoulders save lives ?
Meanwhile cyclists were recently prohibited on the new four lane section of Hwy 69 south of Sudbury which has wide paved shoulders, and only about 6600 vehicles per day. This forces cyclists on to a further 36 km of Hwy 17 east of Coniston, again two lane without paved shoulders, before they can reach Hwy 535 at Hagar to head south.

Evan Rosamond

This is one of those places where cyclists are forced to use a road that they would rather avoid, because there is no alternative. Hwys 11/17 between Thunder Bay and Nipigon is the pinch point of Canada. But it doesn't need to be. CN, in its wisdom, has abandoned and removed the rails from about 300 km of track between Thunder Bay and Longlac. The western 100 km, Thunder Bay to Nipigon, would make an excellent rail trail, a safer quieter, flatter route than the highway. According to Google Streetview, the bridge spans were still in place last year, so it shouldn't cost a lot to develop this.

Denis Baldwin

Relative to the comments by Evan Rosamond, there is a group in the Thunder Bay - Nipigon area working to have the former CN Rail line developed into the Kinghorn Rail Trail which would connect Thunder Bay with Nipigon. There may be a problem with one of the local townships. This group needs all our support in their endeavor.

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