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A tanker truck crash closed the Malahat Highway at Goldstream on Vancouver Island for nearly 24 hours in April, 2011. (RCMP)

Long-awaited safety improvements to some dangerous sections of Trans Canada Highway on Vancouver Island are expected to be announced by B.C. Transportation Minister Blair Lekstrom on Thursday.

The improvements are expected to include cement traffic dividers one kilometre south of the Shawnigan Lake exit, and turning lanes at the intersection.

There has been an average of 58 accidents per year on the highway, including 15 fatalities over the past decade, and police, drivers and residents have long campaigned for more dividers.

Insp. Ray Fast of the RCMP's island traffic division believes the improvements will reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries in the area.

"Like any spot where there's traffic coming out onto a major arterial highway is a concern. And I know from the statistics that we have that that is one of the locations where there are a higher number of crashes there."

The Trans Canada Highway, which is also known locally as the Island Highway, runs from Victoria to Nanaimo on Vancouver Island. It became part of the Trans Canada Highway in 1941.

It includes a dangerous section called the Malahat, which runs north of Goldstream Provincial Park to Mill Bay. The steep and winding route was completed in 1911 as a single-lane gravel road along the cliffs overlooking the Saanich Inlet.