By Vincent McDermott, Fort McMurray Today
A motion proposing harsher penalties on Alberta’s highways has passed unanimously in the legislature.
The motion, proposed by Fort McMurray-Wood Buffalo Independent MLA Mike Allen, is an expansion of his June 2012 report on Highway 63, which listed over 20 suggestions for improving safety on the 240-kilometre stretch.
“Fines levied have not kept up with inflation. The cost of changing the oil in your car has gone up with inflation while the cost of burning rubber on your car has stayed flat,” Allen told the legislature. “Too often it is said of and by excessive speeders on Highway 63 that a fine equivalent to four hours’ wages, where there’s no guarantee they’ll be caught, is woefully inadequate. It’s play money.”
While Allen had Highway 63 in mind when he proposed the motion, the document officially asks the province to create and enforce harsher penalties on all highways.
“It is a distressing and disappointing fact that over one in four fatal collisions on Alberta highways involve a driver travelling at an unsafe speed,” he said. “When motorists callously and selfishly disregard speed limits, they put innocent people at risk in addition to themselves.”