Her friends died in car accidents. Now she's calling for changes in highway design

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Kim Moyles of Lewisporte is familiar with heartbreak.

She lost a close friend in a car crash on the Trans Canada Highway near Gander this summer.

"There's been several incidents over the last couple of years that have brought loss to our community. Most recently was the one that happened on July 7," she said. 

"That was a very dear friend of mine and her husband. That brought a lot of pain to our community."

It's not the first time that Moyles has lost a friend to a car crash, and she's decided to take action.

She's created an online petition to have the province implement changes in highway design that would make the roads safer for motorists.

Rumble strips are just one of the things which Moyles said would reduce the amount of people killed on the road.

"If we at least had that in our province, just at least the rumble strips, then we would probably have spared a lot of heartache in our community," she said.

I have a child that's going to be on the highway, and the thought of that scares me to no end. - Kim Moyles

"We have [rumble strips] presently over the highway in a few spots … and that's great for the driver that's perhaps fatigued, or maybe even distracted, and they're going toward the ditch."

Often distracted drivers aren't the only ones affected by their mistakes, Moyles points out.

"It doesn't protect the person who is driving, obeying the law, not texting, not drinking and driving. It doesn't protect those people because those people are driving the way that they are supposed to," she said. 

"Someone crosses the line at the centre for whatever reason, at least then they have a chance … perhaps that would save lives, yes," she said.

Studies in British Columbia support Moyles's idea, finding that rumble strips are effective in preventing crashes and can reduce highway collisions in all situations by as much as 18 per cent.

Twinned highways a must

Aside from rumble strips, twinned highways are another suggestion that Moyles has for the province's roads.

"Think about when we are on divided highways across the province — which is very few places. When you're on them you're at ease. You're a better driver. You're less stressed," she said.

"The comfort level is definitely a lot higher in a divided highway. That is ideally what I'd like to see across this province," she said.

I'm asking people to think before they get behind the wheel. - Kim Moyles

Moyles has a strong message for drivers who may run the risk of getting in an accident.

"Please stay off the road. Obviously we wouldn't be in this situation, we wouldn't be in this much sorrow at this point," she said. 

"Do not drink and drive. Do not text and drive … being tired behind the wheel is almost as dangerous as drinking and driving. I'm asking people to think before they get behind the wheel." 

Petition gaining traction

After losing so many community members to motor accidents, Moyles is left worried about the safety of her family.

"In less than two months I have a child that's gonna be on the highway. And the thought of that scares me to no end."

Moyles's petition is at nearly 1,000 signatures.

Although she may need more to get the province's attention, when reached for comment by CBC News, the Department of Transportation has claimed that they are compiling information on rumble strips.

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