An accident on the Loughed Highway in Mission. (Submitted photo)

LETTER: Death on Highway 7 shows enough is enough

Agassiz resident Brent Caughy shares his displeasure at the bad driving on Lougheed Highway

(Re: “Motorcyclist killed in collision with pick-up truck on Mission bridge,” AHO online, Oct. 30, 2019)

To the Editor,

OK, enough is enough. I write in response to yet another person injured or killed on Highway 7 from Mission to Agassiz.

You see, I was a fairly long-term resident of Mission, but my wife and I recently relocated to Agassiz. We miss Mission but love Agassiz as our new home.

What I don’t believe is the unchecked driving habits of the “Fraser Valley Autobahn.” Truly I’m a bit taken aback at the way people drive this stretch of road and how much carnage I have witnessed in the last few months since I began using it on a far more regular basis.

I used to take weekend drives with my wife to the Kent and Hope area from Mission, often to hike and visit. We always commented on the speeds and recklessness of many of the drivers. I always chocked this up to simply tourists who impatiently have to get to their destination as fast as possible. (Slow down, it’s actually a pretty nice view below light speed.)

Alas, it is not only tourists. It’s many, and it happens in the wee hours and the late hours and all of the rest of the day and week as well.

When we moved to Agassiz, I readily accepted the fact that it was going to take about 40 minutes more to get to all of the places I used to go. More in the rain. Apparently many residents and people working in the area — sure can tell when shift change happens at the Agassiz prisons — can’t grasp that, so they attempt to make up the difference with speed and obscene driving practices.

I’m not talking about those who go a bit faster than 80 km/h and cruise steadily into town. I’m talking about those who feel 120 to 130 km/h is about right. I’m not exaggerating.

I’m talking about those who feel on-coming traffic should move out of their way because they need to pass and are larger, or just larger in numbers than those heading the other way. I’m talking about four to six vehicles all passing three to five other vehicles at the same time, including milk and logging trucks, in the rain. I refer to those who don’t have room to pass, but do so anyhow and then cut into the line of traffic and brake hard to slow.

I’m talking about seeing more cars passing in the left lane, heading the same way as I am, than are in my lane for a quarter of a mile or more. I’m talking about the people of Deroche having to beg people with messages on a lighted sign to slow down in their town. Or maybe the guy that raced past me one day at excessive speed with trash flying out of the back of his pickup.

I’m referring the guy a few weeks ago that was so angry my little car was only doing 90 km/h that when he did pass, he just had to lock his brakes in front of me to express his displeasure. I’m talking about the guy that passed me just today approaching the Dewdney bridge westbound in/at the blind curve and who crossed the bridge doing at least 90 km/h. Right where some poor soul was killed the night before. The very night before!

My plea is to the spouses, children and friends of these potential killers: please ask those you know to behave this way to stop this insanity. If not for the sake of those of us who have to share the road with these death-race wannabes, but possibly for you, the people who would have to attend their funerals if by some stroke of divine intervention they kill themselves instead of one of us.

– Brent Caughy, Agassiz

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