With road laws becoming increasingly harsh across the province, it's no surprise that the SPVM is planning to take further action when it comes to the relationship between cyclists and drivers on the road. With a new gadget being introduced this spring, police in Quebec will likely begin handing out even more tickets across the province.
TL;DR The SPVM will be introducing a new device that will measure the distance between motorists and cyclists this April. The tool will assist bike patrollers in handing out more tickets to drivers breaking the law and posing safety risks. More details below.
Following the example of Ottawa police, the SPVM will soon begin using a device that measures the exact distance between a cyclist and a vehicle that passes them on the road. Bike patrollers will place the system on their handlebars while cycling across the city.
Last year, at least three cyclists died in the city after being struck by a vehicle. In order for an officer to issue a ticket to a driver, they must be the ones to witness the offense. Unfortunately, in most cases, reports from bike patrollers come after they, themselves, are brushed by a passing car.
The devices will likely enter service this April. Along with Quebec, police in other provinces such as Ontario have begun purchasing the device to begin enforcing stricter laws. It's only a matter of time before all Canadian drivers will want to be a little more cautious when driving around cyclists.
According to the Highway Safety Code, if motorists want to overtake cyclists in the same lane, they must first reduce their speed and "maintain reasonable distance." This means:
- 1 meter apart in a 50km/h or less zone
- 1.5 meters apart in a 50km/h or more zone
The SPVM is hoping that the new device will encourage motorists to be more cautious of exceeding the legal distances between themselves and a cyclist. Since the Ottawa police first introduced the device in 2015, over 36 tickets have been given out to motorists not following the law.
Stay tuned for more information on the new SPVM gadgets coming to Montreal this spring.