RCMP provides update on town’s traffic concerns

ANTIGONISH: The RCMP said it is taking a pro-active approach with traffic concerns within the town, and have already issued over 40 tickets.

Providing an update to councillors during their regular, monthly council meeting on Nov. 15, primarily on the concerns brought forward by the town’s senior staff, Sgt. Warren McBeath indicated those tickets were issued through two initiatives.

He explained Antigonish District RCMP, in partnership with Northeast Traffic Services, Antigonish Bylaw Officers, and Nova Scotia Motor Vehicle Inspectors conducted joint traffic enforcement initiatives where motor vehicle inspectors set-up an inspection station on the Post Road, while the RCMP and bylaw officers conducted enforcement, ordering some to report to the inspection station.

Sgt. McBeath indicated that on Oct. 21, the RCMP issued 23 Summary Offence Tickets, and out of a total of 12 vehicles that were ordered to report for inspection, 11 of them failed. Two weeks later, on Nov. 4, the enforcement efforts resumed and RCMP issued 21 Summary Offence Tickets, with 34 vehicles ordered to report for inspection, and of those, 20 failing.

“The results of that were quite positive,” Sgt. McBeath said. “Those days are very, very effective for us.”

He explained they have a couple dates planned in December for enforcement initiatives.

“It doesn’t end all the problems,” Sgt. McBeath said. “But it does seem as though, around my office at least, things have quieted down, and it would get pretty loud at lunchtime.”

Addressing the community’s concerns related to Arbour Drive, Sgt. McBeath said he has personally gone over there half a dozen times, either mid-morning or just around the end of lunchtime. While he notes there isn’t a lot of traffic there during those times he suspects the problematic windows are in the mornings during the morning commute to work or school, or during the afternoon on when people are on their way home. He did note, however, the RCMP have issued two infractions for failure to stop at a stop sign on Arbour Drive.

Councillor Diane Roberts, advised that in speaking with residents from the street, their suggestion was the RCMP could visit the area later in the evening.

“The prime time on Arbour Drive is later in the evening,” Roberts explained.

Mayor Laurie Boucher indicated it’s nice that they can meet and be provided an update on their concerns.

“To see actions and to results in real time, we thank you for that,” Boucher said.

Following the meeting, the mayor told reporters this is where their partnerships and working together really comes into play.

“We’ve had complaints from the community, for a while now, they’ve come forward at the police and licensing level, as well as the police advisory committee level, and then brought forward to council,” Boucher said. “So it’s really nice to see the RCMP have responded. They’re very active in pursuing what we believe should be a priority.”

Sgt. McBeath has been invited back to the council table to provide councillors with another update in March.