RCMP Roundup

Hit and runs on the increase

RCMP Roundup

Take a cab, walk – just don’t drive

The number of motorists stopped on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol has over the last two weeks increased above the average for this time of the year.

Kitimat RCMP Media Relations Officer Constable Rebekah Draht said from the end of June the RCMP had issued two 12/24 hour suspensions and three Immediate Roadside Prohibitions (IRP).

“Two of those suspensions were for 90 and 30 days and one was a three-day warning,” said Draht.

“That involves suspending a motorist’s driver’s licence for three days, with the possibility of the vehicle being impounded.”

The suspensions involve a motorist’s vehicle being impounded at the roadside and towed to a facility, the vehicle’s owner paying for both the tow and impound facility fees.

“We have a fair number of cars in the impound lot at the moment,” added Draht.

She said the improved weather during that period could be to blame for the increase in the number of suspensions.

“It’s great that people are out and about, but they need to make sure that they don’t drive under the influence,” said Draht.

Hit and runs increasing

Kitimat RCMP is warning motorists who leave the scene of hit and run incidents that they risk large fines.

Draht said the RCMP is investigating three hit and run incidents over the last two weeks, two on July 4 and one on July 10.

In the first of the hit and runs, damage estimated at $2,500 was caused in an incident up the hill, while no damages have been estimated for a hit and run in the parking lot outside Dairy Queen.

No damage estimate was provided for another hit and run that occurred in the parking lot of No Frills on July 10.

“The proper procedure is to report the incident and to leave your information,” said Draht.

A hit and run where there was an occupant in the damaged vehicle can result in the motorist being fined $368, while failure to stop at an accident scene can result in a $196 fine.

Dirt bike and quad usage

Draht said she stopped six youngsters last week who were speeding on dirt bikes along Dyke Road.

She said she stopped the bikers following an increase in the number of complaints from residents and recreational users in the Riverlodge area.

She said the youths, who were riding well above the speed limit, were given a stern talking to about dirt bike safety and using public roads, which Dyke Road is.

Draht issued a general warning to quad and dirt bike riders about using asphalt roads to get from their garages to the dirt roads.

“If a dirt bike isn’t insured and it rides on an asphalt road, the person riding that bike can be fined up to $596,” said Draht.

She said another problem the RCMP had identified was especially young quad and dirt bike riders not wearing helmets.

“Apart from the danger of riding without a helmet, they also face a potential fine of $138 for not wearing one,” said Draht.

She said the majority of cases the RCMP had investigated involved youngsters, riding along Dyke Road, in the service centre and on the back paths that are used by pedestrians, in the late afternoon and evening.