'It can't wait': calls come for immediate action at Brady Road intersection after fatal crash
A 19-year-old man from the R.M. of Rockwood was killed after his car collided with a semi at the intersection on Oct. 25. (Source: CTV News Winnipeg)
WINNIPEG – Residents are calling for immediate change to the intersection at Brady Road and the Perimeter Highway after a fatal crash killed a 19-year-old man.
On Tuesday evening, a petition was launched calling for immediate changes to the intersection of Brady Road and the Perimeter Highway. This comes after a 19-year-old man from the R.M. of Rockwood was killed after his car collided with a semi at the intersection on Oct. 25.
As of Wednesday afternoon, the petition had over 950 signatures.
“We’ve come up with what we think is a reasonable, temporary solution to this problem, and it’s very simple, and it costs nothing, and it can be done today,” said Lesley Shepherd, one of the petition organizers and a close friend to the family of the 19-year-old who died. “What we’re hoping to get done is just a temporary fix to a really bad situation.”
The petition calls on the province to close the uncontrolled access point to Brady Road at the Perimeter Highway, and re-route traffic to the controlled intersection at Waverley Street. The access road runs parallel to the Perimeter Highway.
“It was just one too many deaths at this little access point, and we just decided that something had to be done,” Shepherd told CTV News Winnipeg. “It’s a well-known hazard and we need to deal with it – it can’t wait.”
CLOSING INTERSECTION NOT POSSIBLE : INFRASTRUCTURE MINISTER
In a statement to CTV News Winnipeg, Infrastructure Minister Ron Schuler said closing the intersection is not possible at this time.
“The South Perimeter turnoff is the only way for Winnipeggers to access the City of Winnipeg landfill and is used by approximately 800 vehicles a day,” the statement read. “The dirt service road in the area is not built to handle traffic or weather conditions and is not a safe or suitable replacement.”
Schuler said, as the province has previously announced, it is working on engineering a new service road so the turnoff to Brady Road can permanently close by fall 2020.
“We are looking for interim safety measures in the meantime,” he said.
MAN KILLED IN CRASH A “GENTLE GIANT”
Shepard said the man who was killed in the crash was Ethan Boyer. She had known him his whole life.
“We called Ethan our gentle giant,” Shepherd said. “He had an extreme love for animals and for hockey. He was a quiet boy and always had a little quip to make. He was just very loving and very giving.”
It had been a year of firsts for Boyer. He had just got his first motorcycle, Shepherd said, and he had just started his first year in university. Shepherd said Boyer was wanting to become a computer programmer.
“He was so passionate about the things that he loved. I don’t know what else I can really say - it’s hard to capture a personality with just words.”
Jon Boyer, the uncle of Ethan Boyer, took to Facebook urging people to honour his nephew’s memory by signing the petition.
“This turnoff should NOT exist! The province has said it will remove it late next year. This is too long,” Jon Boyer wrote on Facebook. “Many accidents have occurred here. Who else will die before then? What other families will go through the agony ours is?”
FATAL HISTORY AT INTERSECTION
Lesley said Boyer’s death is not the first at this intersection. In 2011 two men, both 18-years-old, were killed when the pickup truck they were in collided with a semi-truck.There was another death at the intersection last year in August.
“Most people I’ve talked to have had a close call or a near miss at this access point - there’s been numerous accidents,” Shephard said. “All I can say is let’s do something as a community so that no one else has to feel the pain that the Boyer family is experiencing right now.”
Shepherd said she was planning on submitting a letter and the petition to her MLA and Ron Schuler, the minister of infrastructure, on Wednesday evening. Shephard is calling on Winnipeggers to join the petition and contact their local MLA.