It’s back to school, so watch your speed

The Speed Watch community policing program aims to raise awareness about speeding and traffic infractions, and is intended to be a friendly reminder to motorists about the dangers of speeding

Speed Watch volunteers Clara Mohr

Speed Watch volunteers Clara Mohr

With school back in session, Speed Watch volunteers are out in full force, reminding motorists to slow down, especially in school zones.

The Speed Watch community policing program aims to raise awareness about speeding and traffic infractions, and is intended to be a friendly reminder to motorists about the dangers of speeding.

“With today’s busy lifestyles, it is all too easy to get caught up with the pace and not pay attention to our driving behaviours,” said Clint Van Blanken, RCMP crime prevention/volunteer coordinator.

“By having our Speed Watch volunteers at local schools, it is a friendly way of spreading the message without citizens having to pay a fine and receive points on their licence.”

The Speed Watch program is a volunteer initiative hosted between the RCMP, ICBC, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

“You’ve probably seen us out and about with our van and large LED speed reader board,” Van Blanken said.

“Basically, volunteers head out to areas of concern, like high crash locations, schools and parks, as well as respond to requests from  citizens.”

Volunteers are armed with RCMP radar equipment and record the description and plate info of any vehicle traveling 11km/h above the posted speed limit.

Subsequently, that information is turned over to the administrative staff within Ridge Meadows RCMP and the registered owner of the offending vehicle will get a warning letter.

Along with speeding infractions, volunteers are also watching for people operating hand held devices while driving, or missing a front licence plate from their vehicle.

At times, volunteers will work in partnership with regular RCMP members, who may take enforcement actions.