Photo radar coming to Pincourt

par Albert Kramberger
Voir tous les articles de Albert Kramberger
Article mis en ligne le 4 mars 2009 à 23:09
Réagissez à cet article Traffic on Highway 20 eastbound in Pincourt will be monitored by photo radar starting May 19 as part of an 18-month pilot project announced by the province last week. Chronicle, Jacques Pharand Voir toutes les photos

Photo radar coming to Pincourt
Motorists heading to the West Island from the off-island on Highway 20 should note photo radar will be installed in Pincourt as part of an 18-month trial period starting May 19.

Photo radar will be installed on Highway 20 eastbound about 350 metres west of the Boulevard de l’Ile intersection as part of a provincial campaign to improve road safety. According to Transport Quebec, about 54,000 vehicles use the highway in Pincourt daily, which is a 70-kilometres-per-hour zone regulated by traffic lights. In a three year period, 80 accidents were recorded in the area, including 16 fatal with 41 per cent of those deaths caused by excessive speeding.

Pincourt Mayor Michel Kandyba is delighted something is being done on the dangerous stretch of highway that passes through his town but he said his main concern is motorists burning the lights.

“This is a positive move to deter speeding,” he said, adding it’s not a speed trap as there will be ample signs indicating photo radar is in use.

“Highway 20 has a lot of truck traffic and lot of them, even some cars, don’t stop at the lights,” Kandyba said. “There have been quite a few serious accidents there. We can’t expect the police to be everywhere. Something has to be done. People are not conscientious and they’re always in a hurry.”

Quebec announced last week that warning letters will be issued for the first three months of the pilot project and fines will be issued starting Aug. 19. Since there is an issue with proving the identity of the driver with photo radar, drivers will not lose demerit points when tickets are sent by mail.

In Montreal, three red light cameras (including University Street southbound at Notre Dame Street West) and three photo radar locations (including McDougall Road eastbound near Cedar Avenue) will be set up as part of the pilot project. No photo radar or red light camera locations are being set up in the West Island, which suits Pointe Claire Mayor Bill McMurchie just fine, though he would like to see Montreal police spend more time cracking down on motorists breaking the rules along residential collector arteries than on highway service roads. “That would be much more effective (than photo radar),” he said. “Right now, a lot of tickets are given on the service road.”

Pointe Claire reduced the speed limit on residential streets to 40 km/h from 50 last year in order to give police more leeway in handing out speeding tickets, he added.

McMurchie pointed out that photo radar deployed in other provinces, such as British Columbia and Ontario, resulted in controversy and court challenges regarding privacy issues and rights.

Kirkland Mayor John Meaney, however, would have been glad to see photo radar in his town and it has nothing to do with a potential cash influx. “The local cops are so bloody short-staffed,” he said. “I would have liked to try (photo radar) since we don’t have the manpower. It would make drivers think twice (and slow down) when they head into town.”