THUNDER BAY – As summer temperatures rise, the Thunder Bay Police Service is urging local drivers to cool their speeds.
The TBPS underlined that message with an enforcement blitz that resulted in 141 traffic-related charges being laid Monday, including for speeding, distracted driving including cell phone use, stop sign violations, and commercial motor vehicle safety-related offences.
Drivers can become careless once snow and ice are off local roads, police said, but pointed to CAA data indicating 70 per cent of fatal collisions take place on roadways described as “dry.”
Summer brings driving hazards like larger traffic volumes, more pedestrians and cyclists, increased sun glare, and construction zones, police said.
The force’s message to motorists is simple, said Acting Sgt. Sal Carchidi of the TBPS Traffic Unit.
“Be aware: watch for the cyclists, the kids are going to be out and about, motorcycles are going to be on the road now,” he said. “Take that extra time to check your blind spots, slow down, watch for kids, and focus on the task of driving when you’re driving.”
Carchidi called the stretch of Junot Avenue near the Boys and Girls Club, where officers were using LIDAR to monitor speeds in further enforcement activities Tuesday, an example of the local speeding problem.
The area has been declared a Community Safety Zone, with speeds reduced to 40 kilometres an hour and fines for speeding doubled. There is also a pedestrian crossover and a crossing guard in the area.
Still, police find a significant number of drivers doing double the posted speed in the area, Carchidi said.
He warned drivers will encounter more traffic enforcement blitzes throughout the summer, along with RIDE programs and ongoing daily enforcement.