Danger on the side of the highway
Sep 18, 2013 / 8:54 pm
Anyone who has seen a reality show featuring cops, knows the terrifying reality that when an officer or civilian is pulled over to the side of the road, not all other motorists are paying attention.
This month the RCMP Central Interior Traffic Services and Integrated Road Safety Unit (CITS) will be conducting a stepped up enforcement campaign reminding you to ‘Slow down and move.’
In the summer of 2009 the British Columbia Motor Vehicle Act Regulations were amended to deal with a driver’s responsibility when encountering official vehicles stopped on a highway with their emergency lights activated.
The purpose of this legislation was to heighten the safety of personnel who work on the side of our highways.
However despite this legislation change, RCMP Traffic Services Units have seen very little improvements over the past four years. They hope with public education campaigns like this one, along with enforcement efforts, BC motorists will begin to change their driving habits.
Here is the new legislation:
Under this law motorist are required to do two things:
- Drive their motor vehicle at the following rate of speed when approaching or passing the official vehicle
- 70 KPH if the posted speed limit on the highway is 80 KPH or more OR
- 40KPH if the posted speed limit on the highway is less than 80KPH
- A driver travelling in a lane adjacent to the stopped official vehicle or in the same lane in which the official vehicle is stopped must, if it is safe to do so, and unless otherwise directed by a peace officer, move his or her motor vehicle into another lane of the laned highway, if any exist.
Failing to slow down to the required speed when encountering an official vehicle, can also result in a charge of excessive speed with vehicle impoundment should the driver exceed either speeds of 40 km/h or 70 km/h in excess of 41 km/h or more.
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