Nanaimo RCMP Supt. Cameron Miller addresses Nanaimo city council on Monday at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre. NEWS BULLETIN photo

Nanaimo RCMP wants to round up bad drivers

Rising impaired driving numbers, fatal crashes and traffic prompt call for enforcement blitz

Impatient drivers in Nanaimo might want to be a tad more careful to whom they “flip the bird” while passing cars doing the speed limit. It might be Nanaimo’s chief of police.

During his quarterly report to city council Monday, RCMP Supt. Cameron Miller mentioned such behaviour by other drivers on the old Island Highway.

“For those of us who commute in the morning, around 6:30, 7:30 in the morning, the Island Highway’s a freeway…” Miller said. “It’s not a 50 zone – it’s like an 80, 90 zone. Signs say it’s 50, but I get people passing me, flipping me the bird. Unfortunately, I’m driving in my own car, so there’s not a lot I can do, but what I could do is I get my traffic guys out there to set up a couple projects.”

Miller’s expression of frustration followed a list of traffic violation and fatal incident statistics. In 2019 there already have been six traffic-related fatalities as of April 3 and 13 fatal collisions in the past 12 months.

In January and February, police tallied 41 alcohol-related driving offences, compared to 28 for the same period in 2018. Throughout 2018 police issued 157 immediate 90-day roadside driving prohibitions, plus two 30-day driving prohibitions, four seven-day- and 34 three-day prohibitions and 70 24-hour suspensions for alcohol or drugs.

“That’s just too many,” Miller said.

He said police are combining enforcement with education through ICBC to try to reverse a “trend that’s obviously going in the wrong direction.”

RELATED: Stricter drunk driving laws to take effect across Canada

Speed was a contributor in some of the fatalities. On March 28 and 29, police ran a commuter enforcement blitz for just one hour each day and issued 47 tickets and one warning and with summer coming, Miller said traffic will increase and drivers will have shorter fuses.

To get traffic slowed down, Miller said he has called upon the RCMP Integrated Road Safety Unit, a provincial level RCMP traffic enforcement unit based in Nanaimo, and the Commercial Vehicle Safety and Enforcement unit.

“So we’re working with them and a CVSE to set up a number of check stops and just get out, get more marked units out and present and just try and slow the traffic down,” Miller said.

READ ALSO: Nanaimo RCMP and ICBC launch distracted driving blitz



photos@nanaimobulletin.com
Like us on
Facebook and follow us on Twitter

s

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

City of Nanaimo looking into making council’s voting records more accessible

Coun. Sheryl Armstrong says a lot of citizens have asked for additional transparency measure

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Improved health and social services needed

It’s imperative that the root systemic causes of homelessness are addressed, say letter writers

Province providing financing to help get apartments built in Nanaimo’s Wellington area

120 apartments on Ledgerwood Road intended to be affordable for ‘middle-income’ households

‘Someone knows something’: a look into Vancouver Island missing persons with interactive map

There are more than three dozen people listed as missing throughout Vancouver Island

Regional District of Nanaimo to start delivering new garbage carts

Updated automated curbside collection service set to get underway Oct. 1

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

Trudeau apologizes for not recusing himself from WE decision

He says his and his family’s longtime involvement with the WE organization should have kept him out of the discussions

Beverly Hills 90210 star’s family selling Vancouver Island Beach Resort

You can own Jason Priestley’s Terrace Beach Resort in Ucluelet for less than $5 million

Islanders want BC Ferries to follow order that lets residents board before tourists

For ferry-dependent communities, ferries are often the sole practical lifeline to work, school or medical appointments.

Washington’s NFL team drops ‘Redskins’ name after 87 years

The franchise was given the name back in 1933, when it was still in Boston

Departure Bay ferry capacity increases to 70%, says B.C. Ferries

Fifty-per-cent limit being phased out, B.C. Ferries has no current plans to provide masks

Outreach team making connections with young people experiencing homelessness in Nanaimo

Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre youth advisory council initiative offers ‘no-barrier’ help downtown

Most Read