Resident eager to curb Spall speeders

Barry Roman is contemplating wearing a fluorescent safety vest to go to his mail box, and asking a couple of neighbourhood children to set up a permanent lemonade stand.

Roman has been pushing for a couple of months to have something done about speeders on his road, and while the Otter Lake Cross Road resident was joking to Spallumcheen council about the vest and the stand, his sentiment is sincere and succinct.

“I don’t know what can be done, but we’ve got a problem,” said Roman, a retired trucker. “I was talking to the mail lady and she said it’s real dangerous on the road.”

Roman has taken to setting up on the road with a lawn chair and recording vehicles who speed. During one of his recent sessions, Roman told council that most of the 47 cars he counted were doing 80 km/h. The road is posted at 50 km/h through a residential area and transitions to 70 km/h once past the homes.

“Even saw a woman texting and two people talking on cell phones,” said Roman, who is calling for either more police presence or putting in some kind of traffic slow-down device, such as speed bumps, along the road.

Roman’s numbers are backed up by statistics provided by Warren Smith, rural programs co-ordinator for the Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP Safe Communities Unit.

Smith told council that he conducted three speed watch sessions along Otter Lake Cross Road on three different days, each time for one hour between 2:15 and 3:30 p.m.

In the three sessions, 80 cars were clocked going over the speed limit while three cars were found to be going more than 20 km/h over the limit.

“Speed is one of the areas we’re focusing on,” said Smith, adding his office has obtained a speed reader board from ICBC that will be erected at times along the roadway. “Through enforcement, citations and continuing to educate the public, we we hope to slow the traffic down.”

Spallumcheen Mayor Will Hansma said the township has been assured by RCMP that speed enforcement will be conducted along the road, which he described as “a stretch that very smoothly rolls by,” though he hasn’t seen one in several weeks.

“We are working on this with regular conviction with the RCMP,” said Hansma. “Every chance we get, we bring it up.”

Talks are also ongoing with Tolko, whose trucks use the road to get to the mill.