Speeding continues to be an issue on roadways in rural and urban centres in Alberta. Between 2009 and 2014, speed was determined to be a factor in 16 per cent of the total 6,351 fatal and serious injury collisions reported in Alberta RCMP jurisdictions. Alberta RCMP is reminding drivers that speeding creates a danger for everyone on the road.
"The consequences of speeding can be devastating and it's just not worth it. Speed limits exist because they save lives," said Inspector Steve Daley, Acting Officer-in-Charge of Alberta RCMP Traffic Services. "Even the best of drivers won't be able to react to potential hazards on the road when travelling at higher speeds. Drivers need to respect the speed limits, and drive according to traffic and weather conditions to make sure everyone gets home safely."
Speeding is not only driving at speeds beyond the posted limits, but also includes driving too fast for weather and traffic conditions. The World Health Organization states that speeds just 5 km/h above average in 60 km/h urban areas and 10 km/h above average in rural areas are sufficient to double the risk of a collision.
This April and May, select units from Alberta RCMP Traffic Services will participate in a pilot project aimed at reducing overall average speed on major transportation corridors. The project examines different combinations of deployment strategies: visible enforcement and media coverage, and their impact on reducing overall average speed on identified sections of highways. The project will be rolled out on the QEII Highway and selected highways, in two phases, with phase one in April and phase two in May.
During the first phase, Alberta RCMP Traffic Services in collaboration with Alberta Transportation, will display speed-related safety messages on reader boards at pre-determined locations on Alberta highways from late March to early April. These messages will be supported by an enforcement campaign. Speed related data will be collected at several highway locations before, during and after the project to see if there was a reduction in overall average speed and when these reductions occurred. Details of phase two of the project will follow in April.
Alberta RCMP and Alberta Traffic Sheriffs have been working together for safe highways since 2010 in Integrated Traffic Units (ITUs). ITUs work together in a collaborative effort to deliver effective and efficient traffic safety services to Albertans, with a focus on identified enforcement priorities.