Winnipeg drivers aren’t getting the message to slow down and move over while passing a working tow truck on the side of the road, CAA Manitoba says.
During two separate staged calls for service earlier this week, CAA and Winnipeg police found only one driver slowed down and moved over on Portage Avenue.
Compliance was greater in south Winnipeg, where 11 motorists slowed down and moved over on McGillivray Boulevard.
“These are high traffic areas in the city where drivers can breakdown, and we all need to be scanning the road and ready to practice common sense safety by slowing down and moving over,” said Liz Kulyk, corporate manager of government and community relations for CAA Manitoba.
A law requiring motorists to reduce their speed and provide a lane of space has been in effect for six years. Under the Highway Traffic Act, drivers must slow down to 60 kilometres an hour in 80 kilometre or higher speed zones, or slow to 40 if the posted speed limit is less than 80. Penalties may include a fine of $300 up to $2,000, two demerits, and/or receive a one-year driver’s licence suspension.
“That isn’t just a tow truck or a police car on the side of the road; it’s someone doing their job to make sure your friend, family or neighbour gets the help they need, as soon as possible,” said Rob Riffel, Staff Sergeant for the WPS Traffic Division.
“It only takes a few moments to slow down and move over, but it can mean the difference between life and death for these workers and the people they are assisting.”