Speeding continues to be major risk factor in pandemic; Police remind drivers to slow down and leave hospitals free to respond to COVID-19

Edmonton, Alberta – The Edmonton Police Service is noticing significant increases in speeding incidents in recent weeks, both at EPS enforcement locations and the City of Edmonton’s automated enforcement sites.

“Some Edmonton drivers seem to feel that lower traffic volumes are an excuse to speed, but the reality is, speed is a key risk factor in collisions,” says Sgt. Kerry Bates, with EPS Traffic Section. “The faster a vehicle is traveling, the greater the chance of injury or death in the event of a collision.”

In particular, police are seeing incidents of extreme speeding. In the last two weeks alone, EPS Traffic Section has issued violations for more than a dozen incidents of drivers exceeding the speed limit by 40 km/h or more.

Sgt. Kerry Bates - Edmonton Police Service
Sgt. Kerry Bates – Edmonton Police Service

In one instance, a vehicle was found traveling at 100 km/h on Anthony Henday Drive as it passed within feet of a police vehicle stationed by the side of the road with all emergency lights activated. Another vehicle was caught traveling 120 km/h while passing in the lane adjacent to an emergency vehicle stationed on the side of Anthony Henday Drive near Campbell Road.

Yet a third vehicle was clocked traveling at 119 km/h in a 50 km/h construction zone on Groat Road near Emily Murphy Park. Workers were present in the construction zone at the time.

Motorists must slow to 60 km/h, or less if the posted speed is lower, when passing in the lane next to emergency vehicles or tow trucks stopped with their lights flashing. Fines for speeding past emergency vehicles or through construction zones are doubled.

“We never want to see collisions on our roadways, but especially now, when our first responders, health-care workers and hospitals are already under strain, the last thing we want to do is burden them with collisions that are completely preventable,” says Sgt. Bates. “Slow down, obey the rules of the road, and help keep our roads safe for everyone.”

The EPS continues to conduct traffic enforcement as usual. Violations for speeding can include fines of up to $2,000 and up to 6 demerits, depending on how fast the driver was traveling. Those found to be exceeding the speed limit by 51 km/h or more may face a driver’s licence suspension.

MRU #: TR20R004

Edmonton Police Service

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