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Police pay extra attention to motorists in Conception Bay North area

Local RCMP staff sergeants Greg Hicks, left, and Brent Hillier addressed attendees of the Nov. 30 Conception Bay North Joint Council meeting in South River.
Local RCMP staff sergeants Greg Hicks, left, and Brent Hillier addressed attendees of the Nov. 30 Conception Bay North Joint Council meeting in South River. - Andrew Robinson

SOUTH RIVER, NL — The two RCMP detachments covering the Conception Bay North are paying extra attention to the roads these days. That's what two staff sergeants said at Thursday night's meeting of the Conception Bay North Joint Council. Harbour Grace Staff Sgt. Greg Hicks and Bay Roberts Staff Sgt. Brent Hillier were there to give local council members an update on policing efforts in the area.

"We've been asked to focus on it," Hicks said with regards to traffic violations.

Since the beginning of November, the Harbour Grace detachment has responded to 266 calls for service in the Trinity-Conception region. Harbour Grace accounted for 59 of those calls, 106 were in Carbonear and 29 came from Victoria. On top of that, in the past 30 days, officers from the detachment have issued 60 tickets for driving infractions, with 47 of those specific to speeding.

"One jumped out at me," Hicks added. "It was in a school zone and 30 over the limit … Those are the people we want to be targeting, because that's pretty high-risk behaviour."

The Bay Roberts detachment received 271 for the month of November. For speeding tickets, Hiller said his officers gave out 102 in October and 117 for November as of Thursday's meeting.

"We're spending more time on our highways, aside from our calls for service," he said, also adding later that writing more tickets does not necessarily correlate with an overall increase in speeding incidents.

"The only thing is there's been more emphasis on it later in the year. Because of that, we've put more manpower into those areas."

Road safety has been on the minds of many local motorists, with several high-profile fatal accidents occurring on Veterans Memorial Highway in recent months. Transportation and Works Minister Steve Crocker indicated at the October joint council meeting government may implement changes to improve highway safety.

Hillier also took time to highlight the value of having two detachments located so closely to one another.

"We have a memorandum of understanding that we back up Harbour Grace, they back us up," he said. "So at any given time, if I have calls to service and my members are tied up, Harbour Grace is coming up to help us and vice versa."

editor@cbncompass.ca

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