Keeping our roads safe

With the beautiful summer weather and the fun of long weekends and vacations, it’s important that we work together to ensure everyone has a safe summer on our roads.

Halton Region has been named the safest municipality in Canada for the fifth year in a row. This is partially due to the great work of our police officers, but also due in large part to the vested interest residents have in ensuring one another’s well-being.

Working together to stop impaired driving

As part of Halton Region’s ongoing partnership with the Halton Regional Police Service, Halton has the Safe Roads… Your Call program to educate drivers about the dangers of drinking and driving.

This program encourages motorists to help police by calling 9-1-1 immediately when they witness a suspected impaired driver on Halton roads. Once 9-1-1 operators receive a call from the public, it is assigned high priority and all available police resources are used to locate the suspected vehicle. Motorists reporting a suspected impaired driver in progress should have a description of the vehicle, the nearest intersection where the suspect was witnessed, direction the vehicle was headed, and if possible, a license plate number.

We want everyone to stay safe on our roads, so only report what you can safely observe. Impaired driving is a crime in progress and as extra eyes on our roadways, Halton residents play an instrumental role in enhancing road safety and assisting police in keeping impaired drivers off our roads.

Last year, we partnered with our police service and a brave mom to help convey the heartbreak impaired driving can have on families. I encourage you to take a minute and watch a powerful video that could change the way you think about even having one drink and getting behind the wheel.

Standing up to aggressive and distracted drivingdistracted_texting

Have you ever seen a driver who seems to be breaking all the rules and wondered what you could do about it? You can report it!

If you see a driver demonstrating unsafe driver behaviour, you can submit a Citizen Report Form through the Halton Community Road Watch program. The police will send an information letter to the registered owner of the vDistractedDrivingSticker_plainehicle explaining that their vehicle was observed being operated in an unsafe manner at a specific time and location and asks them to drive safely.

Slowing down and stopping on red

We want to make sure that Halton continues to be the safest Region in the country and we’ve recently expanded our red light camera program and brought back our Vehicle Activated Traffic Calming signs to help remind drivers to both slow down and stop at red lights.

Our electronic road side signs, positioned at strategic, rotating locations across Halton, stay blank until an approaching vehicle exceeds the speed limit to trigger the sensor. The sign then lights up for three to four seconds with the speed the vehicle is travelling and the message to “SLOW DOWN.”

Another useful tool that reminds driver to obey the law when driving is our expanded red light camera program. By the end of this summer, there will be seven red light cameras across the Region to remind drivers to stop at red lights and improve intersection safety. Other municipalities participating in this program have seen a reduction of more than 25 per cent in deaths and personal injuries and I’m proud to be able to help police keep our roads safe through this initiative.

Driving sober and following the rules of the road are things everyone can do year all year round. Working together, we can help keep our roads safe and make sure Halton stays a great place to live, work, raise a family and retire.

If you have any Regional concerns or comments you would like to share, please feel free to email me at gary.carr@halton.ca. You can also find me on Twitter @garycarrhalton, LinkedIn or Facebook. To receive further updates on Regional issues, please subscribe to my quarterly e-newsletter, “The Carr Report.”