Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Ottawa police launch new strategy to address speeding and traffic concerns in neighbourhoods

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The Ottawa Police Service rolls out a new traffic enforcement strategy on Monday, with frontline officers increasing their focus on speeding, impaired driving and the traffic concerns raised by residents in neighbourhoods across the city.


The new ‘frontline traffic enforcement’ strategy is part of the ‘community policing strategy and district deployment model’ pilot project that Ottawa police will conduct over the next 18 months, which is designed to identify and respond to unique issues in each area of the city.  Police say the primary focus of the district model is to “serve each community better,” with the city divided into four districts.


As part of the new strategy, frontline officers will conduct 18 traffic enforcement initiatives every three months, focusing on speeding, stunt driving, impaired driving and “residential-area intersection compliance.”


“Traffic-related issues vary from one community to the next; with that in mind, we’re adjusting the way we do business by focusing on issues that adversely impact residents’ quality of life and aligning our resource deployments to address those issues,” Sgt. Craig Roberts, Ottawa Police Service District Traffic Manager, said in a statement.


Speeding and traffic enforcement in residential areas have been some of the main concerns raised by residents and councillors.  A survey released by the Ottawa Police Services Board last August found 53 per cent of respondents said traffic safety was a concern for them in their community. The survey showed 38 per cent of respondents ranked traffic safety, including enforcement measures, as one of their priorities for police to focus on.


Police say frontline officers will use feedback from councillors and the community, information from the Fatal Collision Review Committee and speeding data to “strategically deploy to problem areas.”


“With the support of the OPS District Traffic Manager, enforcement by frontline officers will increase to focus on communities’ varying traffic concerns,” police said in a media release.


In addition to the increased enforcement, officers will also be focusing on educating drivers on “safe driving behaviour.”


“We recognize that there’s no one-size-fits-all when addressing Ottawa’s traffic concerns. For example, rural communities’ traffic concerns can vary from those of their suburban and urban counterparts,” Acting Supt. Marc-Andre Sheehy said in a statement. “So it’s important that we listen to communities’ priorities and adjust our enforcement plans accordingly.” 


Police say the new approach by frontline officers to traffic enforcement will dedicate resources to traffic issues, “without compromising the OPS’ ability to respond to calls for service or overall response times.


Police share the following safety tips when driving:


The Ottawa Police Service issued the following safety tips for motorists:


  • Suspect an impaired driver? Call 911 immediately.

  • Speeding puts you and everyone else on the road at risk. Police ask motorists to, “consider safety each time you get behind the wheel.”

  • Consider your driving habits and vehicle noise when driving. “We all have a responsibility to keep our neighbourhoods as quiet and safe as possible,” police said.

  • When at an intersection, please obey all signage and come to complete stops.


To make a traffic enforcement request, visit ottawapolice.ca.

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