Abbotsford Middle School students Jenna Kim (left) and Jennifer Guthrie present the findings of their research on the Bevan Avenue and Ware Street intersection, urging action on increasing safety by extending a school zone to the area. Dustin Godfrey/Abbotsford News

Abby Schools

Abbotsford Middle students study intersection, urge action on safety

Intersection saw 119 crashes from 2011 to 2016, Jenna Kim and Jennifer Guthrie’s research found

A couple of Abbotsford Middle School Grade 8 students could have solid futures as journalists.

As part of a Middle Years Program community service project, Jenna Kim and Jennifer Guthrie studied vehicle crashes at Bevan Avenue and Ware Street, an intersection where a middle school student was hit by a dump truck on Jan. 4, 2012.

That student now lives with injuries that will impact his entire life, Guthrie told the school board in a presentation at a recent public meeting.

“The goal of our project is to get a 30 km/h zone placed at the intersection of Ware Street and Bevan Avenue,” Guthrie said.

The two students are advocating for a 30 km/h zone to run from the far end of Godson Elementary School to Abbotsford Senior Secondary School along Bevan Avenue and from Marshall Road to the Mill Lake Park crosswalk along Ware Street.

Their analysis, which took data from ICBC statistics and news articles, found 119 crashes from 2006 to 2011, exposing what the pair see as a safety issue for students and the community at large.

“[There is] an average of 21 per year that have involved six pedestrians. More recently, from 2016 to 2018, there were about 50 accidents in only two years,” Guthrie said.

Kim told school board that despite the number of crashes, ICBC does not see the intersection as a high-crash zone, “but an area where people must be vigilant because of the three schools nearby.”

“Even after the Abbotsford Middle School student was hit, ICBC did not change their statement,” Kim said.

Those three schools include more than 2,000 students, who interact with the intersection daily, Guthrie said.

“Nobody seems to find this problem serious enough to do anything about it for the safety of us students and the community,” she said.

Kim noted that, of the crashes they analyzed, many involved either a left turn or speed as factors.

“A 30 km/h zone would solve this problem and make Bevan and Ware safer by ensuring that drivers slow down,” Kim said.

Although driving regulations are beyond school district jurisdiction, the pair of students brought the matter to the school board’s attention to ask the trustees to work with city hall on the issue.

“[The girls] are not only courageous, they are self-initiators. They did this whole thing,” teacher Tera Landry said, adding that the two, on their own, contacted the school district to present to the board of education.

“I really, really admire them for that.”

Trustee Rhonda Pauls echoed that statement, noting that it’s not easy for students to hold the school board to account.

Their presentation didn’t fall on deaf ears, either – Trustee Phil Anderson, who sits on the city’s transportation committee, said he would invite the two students to present their findings to the committee at city hall.

Trustee Korky Neufeld added that if the students bring their presentation, they will have the full backing of the board.

Find more of our coverage on the Abbotsford School District here.

Report an error or send us your tips, photos and video.

Dustin Godfrey | Reporter


Send Dustin an email.
Like the Abbotsford News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

VIDEO: ‘Spiderghini’ stopping in Abbotsford for Avengers: Endgame

Highstreet Shopping Centre displaying Spiderman-designed Lamborghini for movie premiere

COLUMN: Make positive change for marginalized groups, not despite them

Drug policies have a long history of at best ignoring and at worst targeting vulnerable communities

Abbotsford youth gang prevention program gets provincial funding

But just $1 million over three years is far below In It Together’s previous $1.6-million annual funds

Fraser Health reminds parents to get their kids fully vaccinated against measles

Health authority will send letters home to parents with catch-up program information

Province pledges $25 million to build new Eagle Mountain elementary school

New school for 460 students to be completed by fall of 2022, province says

What’s age got to do with it? B.C. couple with 45-year gap talks happy marriage

An Armstrong couple that has 45-year age gap began turning heads after being featured on show Extreme Love.

WATCH: South Vancouver Island shooting an ‘isolated and targeted’ incident, say police

One person in custody, another fled following shooting and crash on West Shore

Woe, Canada: Bruins down Maple Leafs 5-1 in Game 7

No Canadian teams left in Stanley Cup playoffs

Defence accuses officer of ‘incompetence’ in trial for B.C. man accused in daughters’ murder

Double murder trial for the Victoria father accused of killing his two young daughters continues

Olympic auditions return to Lower Mainland

Event an opportunity for unknown athletes to shine and, maybe, change sports

B.C. men challenge constitutionality of Canada’s secret no-fly list

Parvkar Singh Dulai says he received a “denial of boarding” notification under the no-fly program last May 17

Murder on B.C. property didn’t need to be disclosed before sale, court rules

Buyer had tried to break contract after learning a man with ties to crime had been murdered there

B.C. pedophile wins appeal after violating court order

Kelly Glen Isbister’s sentence was cut by the BC Court of Appeal

B.C.’s largest Vaisakhi festival target of threatening Facebook post: Surrey RCMP

Police say they are investigating the posts on Facebook, after local MLA forwarded screenshots

Most Read