Photograph by Greg Halinda
Story by Dan Barnes, Edmontonjournal.com
Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo MLA Mike Allen has been named special adviser to Minister of Transportation Ric McIver on Highway 63 issues.
Premier Alison Redford said Tuesday that Allen will advise McIver on specific recommendations to accelerate the twinning of the mostly two-lane road and address safety concerns.
The so-called Highway of Death, which runs 443 kilometres from a point north of Fort MacKay to a point southwest of Radway, has claimed more than 125 lives since 1990, the majority of those in head-on collisions. On April 27, seven people died as a result of a head-on crash between two pickup trucks, about 50 km north of Wandering River. It was the worst collision in the history of the highway.
“This government needs to do what it can to ensure Albertans who travel Highway 63 get home safely,” said Redford, who met Tuesday in Fort McMurray with Allen and Melissa Blake, mayor of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo. “This is about the province finding ways to accelerate the twinning while looking at other ways to improve safety for everyone who travels this highway.