On Tuesday, September 8th 2015, the Niagara Regional Police Service conducted its 15th annual traffic safety and awareness day, known as operation All Hands on Deck. This operation takes place throughout the entire Niagara Region, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:15 p.m..
This project coincides with the return to school for most of the Regions school children after the summer vacation and targets school zones. Every available on-duty police officer was assigned to traffic enforcement duties in the vicinity of schools in each of Niagaras 12 municipalities. In total, 92 officers, from the Chief of Police to Detectives were reassigned from their normal duties today to participate in this operation. Officers were able to attend at 76 schools, from kindergarten to high school.
According to police, during the All Hands on Deck Traffic Enforcement, Safety and Awareness operation, officers issued 66 Provincial Offence Notices for speeding and 7 for distracted driving, Ten drivers were issued a Provincial Offence Notice for seatbelt/child safety restraint violations and 13 more for various rules of the road violations. There were no arrests made this day by any of the officers on site. Warnings for various traffic matters were given out to 66 drivers as well.
In feedback from officers participating in this years campaign, many report that there appeared to be a high level of road safety compliance this year with few drivers committing traffic offences in their respective areas. Team members reported a high degree of gratitude from parents and drivers in their respective areas. In one case in Niagara Falls, while a parent was thanking an officer for their speeding enforcement, another parent was being pulled over simultaneously for speeding. In another area, a tradesperson late to start his day was issued a speeding notice yet accepted it with gratitude.
Members of the Niagara Regional Police Service will continue to conduct traffic safety programs in school zones throughout the Region for the entire school year, targeting aggressive drivers, drivers using distraction devices and child restraint/seatbelt violations.
Drivers are reminded to educate themselves with the latest changes to the Highway Traffic Act fines and offences, including an increase for Driving while Distracted, now carrying a 3 demerit point fine along with a set fine of $490.00.
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The Niagara Regional Police Service wish to remind all drivers to be alert, drive with caution and be aware of their surroundings, especially in the area of schools and other educational facilities.