Setting an Example

Speed SignThe past weekend's high speed crash on the Lougheed Highway in Maple Ridge has us all shaking our heads in dismay. How could a young driver consider operating their vehicle at such speeds? Don't they know that it is dangerous to drive like this?

I can already hear some people starting to say that it all depends on the circumstances, and I am going to risk your wrath by saying that the majority of drivers on the road today pay lip service to the speed limit and the traffic laws. It's a great example to set for our young drivers, do as I say, not as I do because I am only going to follow the speed limit if it suits me to do so.

When I make my patrols, I pay attention to what is happening around me, even when I have a violator stopped. Unless the roads are bad or the headlights are flashing virtually no one is travelling under the speed limit. In fact, as I write the ticket, I see them approach over the limit, slow to the limit to pass the police vehicle and then speed up again before they leave my sight and my radar.

So, what do the young people learn from their elders? From my perspective it appears to be follow the speed limit when the police are watching, but otherwise do as you please. This is their only concern, and the safety of other road users, much less themselves, doesn't enter the picture at all.

What do we do about this? The next time you are tempted to keep up with flow, reconsider. The others driving around you may just choose to stay at the speed limit if you set the example. Be a good example to other highway users and we may just be able to influence someone positively and contribute to traffic safety. Yes, use your Road Sense.

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