City of Grande Prairie Enforcement Services handed out 126 tickets for speeding in school zones in the first two weeks of the the school year.
Sergeant Ross Gear says while it may be lower than in recent years, like the 352 handed out in 2019, it’s still an avoidably high number. He says while they try and get ahead of the zone change through education, they will continue to dole out enforcement for those who continue to speed.
“I don’t think it’s terribly unusual, I think the higher number is just because our department and the RCMP have been concentrating quite a bit on school enforcement. We want to get out there early and remind everybody through enforcement and visibility, to please slow down and please keep our kids safe.”
Gear says, in addition to drivers, the effort put forth by school officials, parents, guardians, and the students themselves, the onus remains on drivers to pay attention to their surroundings, slow down, and keep safety a top priority.
“The kids are good, the teachers are very good and I think that parents do a good job, but the problem is, they’re still kids,” he says. “As drivers, it’s our responsibility to take that into account, to be vigilant, and to make sure these kids are safe.”
In the first two months of the 2020 school year, 218 tickets were handed out by officers, another 1,993 violations were issued via Automated Traffic Enforcement, which averaged a total of seven violations an hour.
In the County of Grande Prairie, no tickets were issued between August 31st and September 2nd, with six warnings issues in school zones in Bezanson, Teepee Creek, Sexsmith, Wembley, Hythe, Clairmont, and La Glace. One ticket was issued for an equipment violation between September 8th and 14th, with another six warnings handed out.