Const. Gareth Smetham

Jason Miller/The Intelligencer
Const. Gareth Smetham target speeders during the launch of a regional campaign in Bayside Tuesday.

Obey the speed limit or face harsh penalties being dished out to violators in an ongoing blitz by local police forces.

The Quinte Region Traffic Coalition is out in full force weeding out speedsters, but before they start clamping down, the coalition of local police forces and public health officials are cautioning drivers to keep it below the limit.

“We have to continue to deliver the message that speed kills and try to educate the public to slow down,” said Quinte West OPP detachment commander Insp. Cristina Reive. “We will assign extra resources to the roadways.”

Quinte West just concluded a 10 day seatbelt campaign where officers laid 73 charges.

“As we finished yesterday, we had a seatbelt-related fatality in the east region, so it still is something people aren’t picking up on,” she said.

Dr. Piotr Oglaza, of Hastings Prince Edward Public Health, has been tracking an increasing number of preventable deaths linked to speeding.

“We wanted to partner with the police to raise awareness,” he said. “We want to cause some self reflection and provide some tips.”

Dr. Oglaza and his colleagues in the medical field have witnessed first-hand how speeding can lead to collisions that kill and leave others suffering from debilitating injuries.

“My colleagues who are coroners speak to how they see a lot of deaths that are preventable,” he said. “Many of the situations are within the control of the drivers.”

Oglaza wants to attract the public’s attention to the factors driving many of these situations such as speeding, distracted driving and aggressive driving.

“These are very important issues to pay attention to,” he said.

Source: The Belleville Intelligencer