DUNMORE, AB – Cypress County is considering a complete ban of cyclists on Township Road 120 after a fatal crash over the weekend.
At Cypress County council’s meeting on Tuesday, a motion to submit a letter to the provincial government announcing their intention for a cyclist ban was passed unanimously.
This comes after a 64-year-old cyclist from Medicine Hat was killed on Sunday after colliding with an SUV along Township Road 120 near Range Road 62.
Sunday’s crash was the third fatal collision over the last four years along Township Road 120, though two of those fatal crashes did not involve cyclists.
Reeve Richard Oster said a ban would undoubtedly upset some cyclists, but he added it might be necessary for public safety.
“They have their rights too,” said Oster. “It’s just that you can be in the right, but when you make a mistake against a vehicle, sometimes there’s no second chances.”
The county would need provincial approval to make such a change however, as municipalities currently don’t have the power to restrict certain vehicles from roads.
A letter will be drafted to the transportation ministry outlining their concerns, while county representatives will be discussing the issue with fellow municipalities in the fall.
Oster said they’re also planning to hold a public forum sometime in the near future, wanting to consult with cyclists and other users of the road.
“To do that without having the cyclists coming to talk to us, that’s too big a step,” said Oster. “We need their input too.”
Expanding the shoulders of Township Road 120 will not be an option, as the county would have to annex land from neighbouring property owners to make that possible.
Oster added it’s a complicated issue and will take some time before a final decision is made.
“There’s not going to be a fast cure here, there’s not going to be a fast answer,” he said. “We’re going to have to do a lot of homework on this to see what is the right thing to do.”
Cypress County will also wait to see what will come out of Redcliff RCMP’s report into the cause of Sunday’s fatal collision.
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