Q&A - Why Aren't the Police Enforcing Traffic Laws?

Q&A ImageIt seems that there is traffic policing of only three things in the Okanagan Valley: speeding, seat belts and alcohol. There seems to be effectively no policing of driving habits in the Okanagan. Consequently we now have a majority of drivers not using signals to change lanes. A large percentage seems to have no idea that a left turn should end up in the left lane and right lane on a right turn. To make matters worse, Police are also guilty of some of the same bad practices.

One can only assume it's much easier to collect fines by the hundreds sitting on the side of the road pulling over individuals out of the traffic with laser traps. It would be interesting to see the percentage of speeding tickets to bad driving habit tickets. So, if the Police won't enforce the driving laws other than their favorite three, perhaps an advertising campaign on T.V. actually showing the correct driving procedures. Turning into the correct lane, How to use a turn signal on a lane change. 2 second rule. What merge is etc etc. and how this can make driving a better experience for all.

Perhaps many of the street racing and erratic speeding and driving may be caused by road rage from a simple inconsiderate act of someone cutting another off instead of signaling etc.

If we're not going to enforce the traffic laws, why have them..??? What's the point in banning hand held cell phones if nobody will enforce the law.?



The current emphasis of traffic enforcement in British Columbia is 30% speeding and aggressive driving, 30% seatbelts and 30% impaired driving interdiction. The balance of the time may be spent at the officer's discretion. Speeding, aggressive driving and alcohol are a significant contribution to collisions and seatbelts are the best way to reduce the possibility of injury or death if you can't prevent the collision.

Part of this may be a perception problem, and many people asked me if I didn't have anything better to do than write speeding tickets when I was in fact doing other types of enforcement, including the breaches that you speak of. They saw flashing lights, decided that it was speeding enforcement and explanation didn't seem to change their mind. Of course, I can only speak from my own experience, but I am sure that traffic enforcement includes those things that you speak of on a daily basis.

As for police driving skills, I agree, officers are as human as the rest of us and make mistakes or deliberately ignore what they know to be correct. They have no excuse when they are not exercising their duty related exemptions from the provisions of Part 3 of the Motor Vehicle Act. The public should make them accountable by complaining about them the same was as they would for any other driver.

If you are not satisfied with what you see as a lack of traffic enforcement then I urge you to contact the head of traffic enforcement in your area and discuss it with them. Join your local traffic advisory committee or see your municipality about forming one.

Why Aren't the Police Enforcing Traffic Laws?

While some people think that the RCMP are not enforcing most traffic laws, I know they aren't!

The main concern is the Impaired driver. Speeding seems to be monitored mostly in areas known to have crashes.

The biggest problem in regards to the lack of Policing, is the lack of a Municipal Police force, with a mandate of traffic law enforcement. The RCMP appear to be more concerned with Criminal activity, and put traffic law enforcement at the bottom of the list due to priority.

While the whole of the Okanagan is crawling with law breakers of every kind day and night, a consistent form of law enforcement doesn't exist. Everyone you speak to in the valley, talks of the same problems in regards to bad driving habits, noise and aggressive driving. Everyone also states that the reason that it is this way is because of the lack of consistent enforcement.

When you can drive all day or all night and not see or pass one cop car, you know somethings a miss. You think that all of the crazy drivers don't realize that there isn't a Police presence suitable to stop their profound acions. Anyone who drives the Okanagan roads knows that the lack of Policing is a serious problem. It's bad enough that so many people have bad driving habits, but when they constantly get away with being law breakers, it's time for a new game plan.

The problem is that there is no new game plan. There is no extra enforcement anywhere, there isn't even basic traffic law enforcement to an acceptable level. When you have a good percentage of drivers travelling at highway speeds in residential areas, you know there is something really wrong.

Thousands of vehicles drive down Springfield Road in Kelowna daily, Speed reader boards prove that speeding is an epidemic, and yet no real consistent form of traffic law enforcement is to be seen. In the evenings when most crashes take place, traffic enforcement is rarely seen, and when it is present, doesn't last long enough to have an effect, so it is basically useless.

Traffic offences range from not stopping at stop signs, or lights, to speeding at over 100 km/hr any day of the week. When residents have seen and watched this for a few years and have made hundreds of complaints without any proactive form of measure implemented, you know something is really wrong.

I have asked this question for many years, with all of this craziness taking place on our streets daily, "Where are all the Police, and the enforcement"? It appears we don't have any Police for law enforcement anymore, we don't have Police to walk the beat and protect our communities and neighborhoods, we don't have any response to our complaints, we don't have any form of consistent proactive enforcement, we have a full blown out of control nightmare!

Many people have also given up calling the Police to make a complaint because they know nothing will be done to remedy the on-going concerns. People are being constantly disturbed by noisy exhaust systems which have become ever so popular on many vehicles, this should be outlawed completely, and isn't even being enforced!

The RCMP are also scared of the Hells Angels, and will not stop and ticket them with their Harleys with strait pipes and no mufflers. Last year I complained about 4 or 5 racing through my neighborhood after 2 a.m. I got the plate numbers, addresses of the offenders, and the officers all called me back to say there was nothing they could do about the noise or the speed!

Absolutely rediculous! I go out of my way to supply the Police with plate numbers and addresses as to have the noisy bikes dealt with, and I get told there is nothing that can be done. So, for 2 years I was woken up by noisy Harleys racing past my house, because of the lack of enforcement of laws created to protect us!

So, yeah, Why aren't the Police Enforcing all the traffic laws under the MVA?

And, what happened to the noise laws that protected us from noisy bikes with no mufflers?

Not a priority, or lack of members to do the job!

I say its time for a new Municipal or Provincial force with a new mandate for Community Policing and law enforcement, the RCMP can stay and babysit the Criminal drug and Gang scene.

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