New Brunswick

Moose fences need fixing: advocate

A Saint John-area woman is again campaigning for moose fencing along Route 7, but this time Cathy McCollum is demanding the provincial government fix the safety structures that are falling down.
A Saint John-area woman is again campaigning for moose fencing along Route 7, but this time Cathy McCollum is demanding the provincial government fix the safety structures that are falling down.
Sections of moose fencing along Highway 7 between Saint John and Fredericton are in need of repairs. ((CBC))

McCollum collected more than 10,000 names on a petition five years ago calling for the New Brunswick government to set up moose fencing on the highway between Fredericton and Saint John.

The Department of Transportation ended up following McCollum's advice and set up wildlife fencing along sections of the highway to protect drivers from moose and deer.

McCollum, who started her campaign after her daughter survived a crash with a moose, said parts of the fence are now in need of repair.

She said she wants the Department of Transportation to start fixing the sections of the wildlife fence.

"I have called to report it and the woman laughed at me. I said, 'Ma'am this is not a funny matter,'" McCollum said.
Cathy McCollum, who started a petition for moose fencing five years ago, has called the provincial government to asking for repairs.

McCollum said the sagging fence is putting lives at risk. She said there's no excuse for not having the fence repaired.

"You know [New Brunswick Premier David] Alward, if he thinks family and stuff are great, then he should think about the fence being great and he should fix it and he should put some more up," she said.

After being contacted by CBC News, a Department of Transportation official said road supervisors were aware of the problem and that a contractor will be hired in the next few days to repair the fence.

The department said the sections of the fence are sagging because of a combination of frost heaves and heavy rains.

The provincial government installed moose fencing along sections of Highway 7, as well as Highway 8 and Highway 11 in northern New Brunswick.

The Department of Transportation puts up wildlife fences in areas that have had more than 15 moose collisions involving a moose over a five-year period.

It is estimated there are more than 300 New Brunswick vehicle collisions with moose each year.

According to the Transportation Department, 85 per cent of these crashes happen between May and October, as the animals leave the forests to get away from pests and the heat and to eat roadside vegetation.

There were 92 moose-vehicle accidents between 2002 and 2006, including one fatality, along Highway 7, according to provincial statistics.

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