Animal warning system deployed in Saskatchewan, Canada for $100,000 (Canadian).

August 2003
Saskatchewan 7,Harris,Saskatchewan,Canada; Highway 101,Sequim,Washington,United States

Summary Information

This paper investigated the countermeasures used to improve safety and reduce vehicle-animal accidents on low-volume rural roadways. The paper identified a number of roadside warning systems that may be of interest to officials responsible for these roadways, including in the following two examples.
In 2001, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), and the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) deployed a new method to improve safety and reduce vehicle-elk accidents in problem areas on Highway 101 near Sequim on the Olympic peninsula. The system was designed to alert motorists of the presence of animals by triggering a solar-powered radio activated flashing “ELK X-ING” warning sign when an animal equipped with a radio collar was within a quarter mile of the roadway. A federal grant of $75,000 was provided to pay for the cost of collaring the elk, building and installing the radio-activated signs, and purchasing the equipment necessary to monitor the elk herd. Wildlife specialist attached the collars to eight elk (10% of the herd), and 12 radio activated warning signs were installed. The collars had a three-year battery life.

In Saskatchewan, Canada, a new technology was deployed to alert wildlife of freeway traffic and scare animals away from the road. Twenty-five wildlife warning units were placed on both sides of the road approximately every 1000 feet along a 3.1 mile section of Highway 7. Units at each end of the array were equipped with sensors and transmitters to detect approaching vehicles and send signals to other warning units downstream enabling them to activate warning lights and sounds, and repel animals away from the roadway and oncoming traffic. The cost of the system was approximately $100,000 Canadian dollar (CAD), not including installation and maintenance costs during the two year project.

See Also:

Click here for a related web article on the Radio Activated Herd Detection and Highway Warning System.

Click here for additional information on the Vehicle Detection/Warning and Wildlife Deterrent System (Wildlife Warning System) in Saskatchewan, Canada.


Links checked and updated January 24, 2011.

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Highway Safety Challenges on Low-Volume Rural Roads

Author: Hall, J.W., et al.

Published By: Paper presented at the ITE 2003 Annual Meeting, Seattle, Washington

Source Date: August 2003

System Cost

Elk Herd Detection and Driver Warning System: $75,000 USD.

Wildlife Deterrent System: $100,000 CAD.


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Cost ID: 2004-00081