Police have been at school for the past couple of weeks. More aptly, they’ve been school zones, ticketing speeders and making sure school zones are as safe as they can be.
RCMP handed out 379 tickets over the past two weeks and have been patrolling every one of the city’s 37 schools. Of those tickets 278 were for speeding, eight of those drivers were issued excessive speeding tickets, including one driver that was 65 km/h above the posted limit of 30 km/h. Those eight drivers had their vehicles impounded for seven days.
Other violations included:
- 17 seatbelt tickets
- 1 improperly restrained child
- 2 cell phone tickets
- 2 intersection-related violations
- 1 24-hr suspension for drugs
- 42 other tickets under the Motor Vehicle Act and its Regulations
“Despite our public warnings to slow down in school zones, nearly 300 tickets were issued for speeding in just nine school days,” said Sgt. Matt LaBelle, in charge of the Prince George RCMP’s Municipal Traffic Services Section. “This is not safe for children. We will continue to enforce speed limits in areas where children are vulnerable.”
On a day when school is in session, school zone speed limits are 30km/h, from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., unless otherwise posted. Playground zone speed limits are 30 km per hour, from dawn until dusk, every day without exception.
In addition to the school zone enforcement, RCMP volunteers with the Citizens on Patrol Program conducted Speed Watch throughout several school zones over the first nine days of school. Citizens on Patrol volunteers observed approximately 541 vehicles and found over 232 motorists driving over the posted 30 km/h school zone limit. Although this year the total number of observed vehicles is half of last year’s total; the number of total speeding vehicles has doubled, up from 114 in 2016 to 232 at present.
“Forty per cent of vehicles observed this year during back to school campaign were exceeding the posted 30 kilometre per hour school zone limit,” said Mike Burt, Program Coordinator for Citizens on Patrol. “That is a very concerning trend.”
Those drivers that went through a Speed Watch station but did not get stopped by police officers, will likely receive a warning letter in the mail. The letter, from the detachment’s Community Policing Section, will explain the offence(s) observed and what the penalty could have been.
For more information on Citizens on Patrol or to learn about crime prevention, go to www.princegeorge.rcmp.ca. As an alternative, contact the Prince George RCMP’s Community Policing Office by calling (250)561-3366 or dropping by the office located at 455 Victoria Street, Prince George.
If you see a traffic violation and want to make a report, please call our non-emergency line at 250-561-3300. In order to issue a violation ticket under BC’s Motor Vehicle Act, police require a formal statement and your willingness to attend court. Make note of the time, date and location of the offence, the license plate of the offending vehicle, direction of travel and a general description of the incident. If police are provided with a statement & your willingness to attend court, investigators can follow-up with the registered owner of the vehicle and issue them a violation ticket. We cannot do this without your witness account.
The Traffic Services Section is committed to increasing road-user safety, while decreasing the number of collisions at high-frequency locations within the City of Prince George.