With April being Speeding Awareness Month, the Alberta Traffic Safety Action Plan along with Morinville RCMP and its law enforcement partners will be focusing their attention on speeding-related offences.
According to a statement released on Sunday, April 2 the Alberta RCMP said that safety on Alberta roads is always their top priority.
However, they emphasized that everyone has a stake in their efforts to reduce the number of deaths and injuries on the roads.
Government, law enforcement and the many traffic safety partners are working together to find solutions, but drivers also need to realize the importance of the role they play.
The statement said that speed limits save lives every day; the faster one goes, the longer it takes to stop and the faster one drives, the harder they hit.
According to the statement, almost three out of every ten fatal crashes are the result of driving at a speed unsafe for the prevailing road conditions. By the time the driver realizes he/she is going too fast, it may be too late.
Moreover, speeding saves little time and it is always about getting to your destination safely. When one slows down, he/she increases the safety of everyone in the vehicle as well as other road users.
Driving a few km/h over the posted speed limit:
• Reduces your ability to steer safely around curves or objects on the road.
• Decreases your field of vision and your peripheral vision.
• Extends the distance required to stop your vehicle in emergency situations.
• Reduces your ability to obey traffic control devices such as red lights and stop signs.
• Increases the chance that you will lose control of your vehicle.
• Reduces the effectiveness of seatbelts and other safety devices such as airbags and side impact beams.
• Increases the probability of death or injury if there is a crash.
• Reduces the effectiveness of roadside hardware such as barriers, crash cushions and bridge rails.
Speed limit in school and playground zones:
• The speed limit in both urban and rural school zones is 30 km/h and is in effect on school days from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. unless other times are posted by the municipality.
• The speed limit in a playground zone is 30 km/h and is in effect from 8:30 a.m. to one hour after sunset.
• A vehicle is not permitted to pass another vehicle travelling in the same direction in either school or playground zones during the times these zones are in effect.
Emergency vehicles and construction zones:
• Motorists must slow to 60 km/h, or less if the posted speed is lower, when passing emergency vehicles or tow trucks stopped with their lights flashing. Fines for speeding in these areas will be double the regular amount.
• If there are two or more traffic lanes in the same direction as the emergency vehicle or tow truck, passing vehicles need only slow down in the lane immediately beside the stopped emergency vehicle. Vehicles travelling in other lanes, including oncoming lanes, may maintain their speed but should proceed with caution.
• Emergency vehicles include fire, police, ambulance, tow trucks, and a vehicle used by a gas disconnection unit of a public utility or a designated emergency response unit.
• In construction zones, motorists must observe the posted speed. When workers are present, fines for speeding in these areas will be doubled. This is where workers are on or near the road, operating heavy equipment, directing traffic, or using hand tools within the construction zone. Drivers need to look out for workers who are behind construction equipment and less visible.