REGINA -- Loose gravel is a contributing factor in a large number of single vehicle crashes on Saskatchewan’s rural roads each year, according to SGI.

SGI’s Traffic Safety Spotlight for August is offering tips on how to drive more safely when driving off the pavement.

Gravel roads pose specific safety hazards drivers need to be aware of. Loose gravel makes it more difficult to steer around corners, and dust can cause issues with visibility.

There are on average more than 3000 crashes on rural roads each year in Saskatchewan. On average, 500 people are injured, and 25 are killed.

When a serious crash does occur, STARS Air Ambulance usually responds.

“Rural roads, gravel roads, we see a lot of catastrophic accidents,” STARS Flight Paramedic Darcy McKay said. “Mostly involving single vehicle rollovers, ejections, and anytime that happens, usually the fatality rate goes up.”

Safe driving tips for gravel roads are available on the SGI website.