Charla Huber/News staff With the RCMP’s Air 8 hovering behind

Police target dangerous drivers on the Malahat

Starting this week, and continuing on throughout the summer, drivers on the Malahat Drive will be under increased surveillance.

Starting this week, and continuing on throughout the summer, drivers on the Malahat Drive will be under increased surveillance.

Policing units from the south Island, including West Shore RCMP, kicked off the Making the Malahat Safer campaign on Wednesday.

“It’s our goal that no family has to have a policeman give them the gut-wrenching, life changing news that a loved one is never coming home again as a result of a crash on the Malahat,” said Staff Sgt. Frank Wright, CRD Integrated Road Safety Unit.

RCMP and the IRSU are making themselves visible on the Malahat in hopes of targeting high consequence and high risk driving, such as drunk driving, speeding or using mobile devices behind the wheel.

“We are frustrated with what we can do as a community to get impairment off the road. It’s not the odd occasion (when crashes are caused by impairment), it results in a lot of serious crashes,” said Langford fire Chief Bob Beckett. “This isn’t about the road or an engineering aspect.”

In the past four years nearly 200 people have been injured and seven people have died on the Malahat Drive in car crashes.

While ramping up enforcement RCMP have several tools and actions they are taking to help make the 25-kilometre stretch of highway safer.

Check stops are being used to combat drinking and driving, the use of scopes will help identify drivers using mobile devices and not wearing seat belts, and licence plate readers will help identify prohibited drivers and unlicensed vehicles.

“If you are breaking the law, you will be charged,” said Const. Robert Figueiredo, of the CRD IRSU. “We want to reduce or eliminate crashes and deaths on our highways.”

With more police on the road, Figueiredo wants to remind all drivers when an emergency vehicle is in on the side of the road with its lights flashing, drivers “must reduce their speed and move over.”

Vancouver Island’s RCMP police helicopter, Air 8, is also being used to monitor unsafe driving practices such as tailgating, unsafe passing and aggressive driving. Once an offender is spotted, RCMP on the highway will be radioed the cars location and description.

“It will be the eye in the sky,” Figueiredo said.

reporter@goldstreamgazette.com

 

 

Just Posted

Esquimalt gives six-storey rental complex the green light

A new apartment building is set to go up on Admirals Road

Light up August with a lantern building workshop in Sidney

ArtSea workshops in preparation for Aug. 24 Salish Sea Lantern Festival

Colwood field lacrosse camp aims to get more kids involved

Victoria Field Youth Lacrosse hopes to inspire future athletes

WATCH: Our Place Therapeutic Recovery Community turns into a ‘place of healing’

500 volunteers, 120 businesses worked to transform View Royal community

A party for 11 pups and their adoptive families in Beckwith Park in Saanich

The coonhound siblings reunited at a barbeque on Saturday

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Ottawa fights planned class action against RCMP for bullying, intimidation

The current case is more general, applying to employees, including men, who worked for the RCMP

Alberta judge denies B.C.’s bid to block ‘Turn Off the Taps’ bill

He said the proper venue for the disagreement is Federal Court

Canadian high school science courses behind on climate change, says UBC study

Researchers found performance on key areas varies by province and territory

Six inducted into BC Hockey Hall of Fame

The 26th ceremony in Penticton welcomed powerful figures both from on and off the ice

RCMP investigate two shootings in the Lower Mainland

Incidents happened in Surrey, with a victim being treated at Langley Memorial Hospital

CRA program to help poor file taxes yields noticeable bump in people helped

Extra money allows volunteer-driven clinics to operate year-round

Recall: Certain Pacific oysters may pose threat of paralytic shellfish poisoning

Consumers urged to either return affected packages or throw them out

Most Read