Drivers received a refresher on road behavior on the old island road when the Nanaimo RCMP and the BCAA staged another “Slow Down, Go Your Way” awareness campaign.
The event occurred on Friday, April 29, when Mid Island Towing parked a tow truck and a “disabled” vehicle near the Dorman Road intersection.
In British Columbia, motorists approaching vehicles stopped along the road that have flashing red, blue or yellow lights are required to move and slow to 70 kilometers per hour in areas where the limit speed is 80 km/h or more, or up to 40 km/h. h where the speed limit is 70 km/h or less. This includes slowing and moving vehicles used by maintenance workers, utility workers, police, firefighters, paramedics, tow truck drivers, traffic safety enforcement personnel commercial vehicles, land surveyors, animal control workers, garbage collectors and other roadside workers.
“Today we are here to educate and raise awareness about the slowdown and overshoot in BC,” said Ravi Dhaliwhal, BCAA’s Senior Director of Automotive Operations.
He said the campaign was going well and a number of warning letters had been distributed.
“We are just here to educate and raise awareness. We are not here to penalize anyone…” he said. “We’re so passionate about this because it’s such an important campaign for us, to make sure our roadside workers are safe when working on the side of the road.”
In just under an hour, Nanaimo RCMP intercepted more than 110 drivers who had broken the rule, but excluding those who were driving too fast – one driver was ticketed for driving 108 km/h in the 70 km/h zone – most drivers were only handed warnings and educational brochures informing them of the rule.
“It’s a very critical and important thing for us as relief workers, because we’re in that category, and [it’s about] safety for us on the side of the road when people are flying alongside us and we try to take care of you when you’re down,” said Steve Blunt, driver at Mid Island Towing. “It has become more and more of a concern for us.”
He said speeds are generally not too fast on the stretch of highway where Friday’s event took place, but the side of the road is narrow and dangerous to work there.
“It doesn’t matter if you’re doing 70 km/h or 100 km/h, we’re always at risk,” Blunt said.
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