2018 road accidents report was best in 50 years: SAAQ

Quebec's auto insurance board has come out with what it's calling the most positive annual report on road accidents in more than 50 years.

The SAAQ says in 2018, there were 1,723 fewer people involved in road accidents than the year before — as well, there were three fewer deaths, 68 fewer serious injuries and 1,652 fewer minor injuries.

That's a 4.6 per cent decrease overall from 2017.

The board also notes the across-the-board decreases were all the more impressive considering there was a 1 per cent increase of vehicles on the roads, and a 1 per cent increase in the number of people holding drivers' licences.

Among the highlights of the report, deaths among those aged 15 to 24 have decreased by 21.9 per cent compared with the average of the last five years, and serious injuries in that age group decreased almost as much.

And most of the serious accidents in which those under 24 are involved happen on weekends, and during the summer and fall.

It also shows that fewer cyclists and motorcyclists have been getting involved in serious accidents, but among pedestrians, there are fewer deaths, but the number of people involved in collision with cars and trucks went up 17 per cent, compared with the average of the last five years.