Was Lake Cowichan’s inclusion in Worst Roads Survey a mistake?

Worst Roads Survey: Town of Lake Cowichan receives a BCAA letter saying a road in the municipality needs improvement, but no road was listed

The Town of Lake Cowichan recently received an incorrect letter from BCAA with regards to road safety.

The letter was falsely sent to council and stated a road in the municipality had been identified as needing improvement.

But on the list of specific details and roads attached, no Lake Cowichan road was listed.

Asked why BCAA sent the letter to council in the first place, Mayor Ross Forrest said, “That’s a good question.”

Despite numerous calls, Mark Donnelly, president of the BCAA Road Safety Foundation who wrote the letter, was unavailable for comment at press time.

The piece was presented by the Town’s chief administrative officer, Joseph A. Fernandez, at the Nov. 5 public works committee meeting to council members in attendance, which included the mayor.

According to BCAA’s letter, one of Lake Cowichan’s roads was identified in an annual Worst Roads Survey.

Donnelly stated in the letter, “for our survey, a road could be nominated because of poor surface conditions, safety concerns or congestion problems. Improving road safety for all British Columbians is a top priority for BCAA.”

However, the letter, addressed to Forrest, goes on to state “if you see a road listed that is managed by a separate authority, please inform us and we will forward the results to that authority.”

The mayor remained defiant and agreed the letter might have just been a standard one sent out to all surrounding municipalities on Vancouver Island.

“I drive constantly and no one’s complained to us [about Lake Cowichan’s roads].”

Forrest believes the town’s roads, as well as those in Youbou, Honeymoon Bay and Skutz Falls, are in good condition.