The traffic safety unit is comprised of 12 Constables, 4 Corporals and 2 Sergeants, who work toward making Regina roadways safer for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists through public education, community programs and traffic enforcement. The Traffic Safety Unit works closely with other police agencies, Saskatchewan Government Insurance, the City of Regina Municipal Engineering Department and the citizens of Regina.
The unit has seven enforcement vehicles including one collision investigation unit. Four of the vehicles are unmarked, an advantage in detecting and apprehending aggressive and dangerous drivers. All vehicles are equipped with emergency equipment, radar instruments and laser speed enforcement units. The Traffic Safety Unit is also responsible for equipment and training to apprehend impaired drivers. This includes two Intoxilyzer instruments for obtaining blood alcohol readings from arrested subjects and several approved screening devices used to obtain readings from suspected impaired drivers.
Members within the Traffic Safety Unit receive collision investigation training above and beyond the basic level. This advance training comes in three different levels:
Collision Investigator Level II
Collision Analyst Level III
Collision Reconstructionist Level IV
Members from within this unit have training in the various levels and are called upon to investigate major collisions when they occur. Depending on the collision dynamics, severity of injury, and complexity of the scene, the appropriate level of collision investigator will attend.
On a number of occasions, Traffic Safety Unit members who hold a Level III or Level IV certification are called upon to provide lectures to both the Regina Public and Separate school systems.
Red Light Cameras
In November, 1999, the Regina Police Service began a six-month pilot project on automated intersection enforcement, or red light cameras. Drivers who disobey red lights increase the risk of causing right-angle collisions, which can result in serious injury or death. Initially, drivers who disobey red lights receive warning letters, however after the pilot project demonstrated the seriousness of the problem, the Regina Police Service moved to enforcement. Tickets were hand-delivered within the city until the necessary legislative changes were made to allow the tickets to be mailed out. There are three intersections equipped for red light cameras. They are Albert Street and Saskatchewan Drive, Dewdney Avenue and Lewvan Street and Albert Street and Parliament Avenue. The camera is only activated when a car enters the intersection after the traffic light has turned red.
Traffic Focus of the Month
In addition to regular duties, the Traffic Safety Unit targets specific offences and problem areas through “Traffic Focus of the Month”. The targeted offence or problem is dictated by season, as in the case of September’s focus on school zone speed limits.
This pilot project began in April, 2001, that focuses on impaired driving. It is a project of the Regina Police Service, in partnership with SGI. Enforcement Overdrive enables police to operate check stops focused on drinking and driving, over and above regular-duty enforcement, with funding for the increased staffing provided by SGI.
The fact that road surfaces are icy at this time of year, doesn’t give drivers an excuse to run red lights or stop signs. Remember: speed limits are always set at maximum speeds to be driven under perfect driving conditions. If the driving conditions are less than perfect, it is the driver’s responsibility to slow down so that he/she can safely stop at intersections.
Always carry your driver’s license with you when you drive. The law requires that you be able to produce your license on demand, not within 48 hours as many people seem to believe. There are provisions under the Traffic Safety Act that allow an officer, at his or her discretion, to give you 48 hours to produce your driver’s license, but remember the decision rests with the officer.
Pedestrians, remember to always look both ways before crossing a street. Drivers may not see you, so be sure any approaching driver knows you are there before you step into the roadway. This is especially important during winter months because a vehicle traveling on a slippery roadway needs a greater distance to stop. Just because you have the right of way doesn’t necessarily mean a vehicle can stop. Let’s work together to lower Regina’s pedestrian/vehicle collision rate.