Thursday, January 2, 2014

Oak Bay: Slow Down for Deer!

On Friday, December 20th, from 4-5pm, seven other deer activists joined me on Cadboro Bay Road across from the Uplands Golf Course on a frigid, rainy night holding bright signs to persuade drivers to slow down. Our media release can be read here.

This section of road is the #1 site for deer fatalities in Oak Bay, according to the CRD Deer Management Strategy Map (see graphic to the right).

It's no coincidence, given the factors that make up this stretch: it's the only road in Oak Bay with a 50kph speed limit (and many speed here.) The road is poorly lit, and trees along the west side of the road make it hard to see if there are deer, and they can easily step out on the road and get hit.

You can see on the map there are almost no other areas that accidents have occurred. This is why we targeted this area: this is solvable.

We definitely had an impact - most cars slowed when they spotted us. Several drove by dangerously, clearly above the marked speed limit. It would be helpful if Oak Bay Council installed flashing speed signs in this spot, to remind drivers that they need to obey speed limits.

Much needs to be done, and it is achievable and could significantly reduce accidents. Lighting can be improved, speeds can be controlled, which would have the most impact. A full fence will be unpopular with the Uplands Golf Course, but other solutions exist: there could be more shrubs grown, motion-sensor lights and radios could be installed, and roadside reflector technology which lights up the road when a car passes could also be helpful in keeping deer away from the trees and road.

Come on, Oak Bay - let's do it!


Thanks to our volunteers for braving the elements!

If you're on Facebook, join our Greater Victoria Deer Advocates group, otherwise sign-up to our email list to get updates on deer and more.

Dave Shishkoff
Canadian Correspondent
Friends of Animals
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