An Assessment of Roadside Memorial Policy and Road Safety

Anthony Churchill, Richard Tay


When a loved one is lost in a crash, mourners often place roadside memorials to help with their grieving process but the placing of memorials has raised many questions about the impact the memorials themselves have on road safety. The two main views are that memorials either reduce road safety by distracting drivers or improve road safety by warning other drivers to proceed carefully. This paper collected and examined data relating to the effects of roadside memorials to allow for better informed policy to improve road safety.

Responses to the driver questionnaire revealed that the majority of drivers preferred an "informal allow" policy. Even those strongly opposed to memorial use acknowledged the importance of the memorials for the grieving process. Responses from agencies surveyed indicated that road agencies in Alberta generally do not have a policy. This is largely attributed to the sensitive nature of the subject and the political issues.


Road; Safety; Memorials

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