Traffic keeps police busy

Speeders, impaired drivers, seatbelt infractions, heavy traffic volume

Speeders, impaired drivers, seatbelt infractions, heavy traffic volume.

It put the long in long weekend for local RCMP traffic officers.

“The North Okanagan traffic members were out keeping the highways safe on the long weekend,” said RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk. “At one time officers reported traffic was backed up on Hospital Hill (32nd Street) to the top at 15th Avenue from the lights at 25th, and right through 32nd Street to 48th Avenue.”

On Monday, three members were working the highways and impounded five vehicles for excessive speeding.

The vehicles were stopped south of town on Highway 97 and the speeds recorded were 157-, 141-, 138-, 138- and 136-km/hour in a 90 zone.

Two of the vehicles were from out of province and were heading home after the long weekend.

“One vehicle was a rental unit so this will likely cost the driver even more before the vehicle is returned,” said Molendyk.

On Friday at 3:30 p.m., a northbound traffic member recorded one speed reading of 132-km/h in the 90 zone by Bailey Road. Due to heavy traffic and a concrete divider, the member was not able to turn around and stop the vehicle.

The member radioed the other officers working south of him and gave the vehicle description to his partner who he knew was operating a laser set for speed by Crystal Waters Road.

“The traffic member got a second speed reading on the vehicle of 138 in the 90 zone,” said Molendyk, adding the vehicle was from out of province and was impounded as a result of the driver’s actions.

One of the traffic checks that bothered one of the officers this weekend was a vehicle he stopped on Monday.

There were five children as passengers, four of them were of the age and size that they required car seats. The four children were not in a child seat and two of them were sharing one regular seatbelt. The driver was charged for the seat belt offenses and proper transport was arranged for the children.

Overall, for the holiday long weekend, there were seven vehicles impounded for excessive speed. Officers wrote 117 speeding tickets, 20 seatbelt infractions and two tickets for drivers using their cell phone.

One motorist was charged for having open alcohol in the vehicle, one had no  valid driver’s license and one person was served an indefinite prohibition from driving.

Police wrote 17 other violation tickets and issued 24 warnings.

Traffic officers would also like to thank the public for calling in a possible impaired driver on July 31.

A member of the public called in a possible impaired driver on Highway 97 coming from the Falkland area. A traffic services member located the vehicle by Westside Road.

The driver was checked and found to be impaired. A 90-day Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP}  was given and the vehicle impounded for 30 days.

Later that evening, another traffic member issued a-90 day IRP to an impaired driver that claimed they had come just come from a local bar. The vehicle was also impounded for 30 days.