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East St. Paul COPP volunteers operating speed-reader boards during Spotlight on Speed Week

Posted: May 1, 2017

Left to right, MPI's Ward Keith, ESP Mayor Shelley Hart, WSP COPP volunteer Detlef Hindemith, ESP COPP volunteers Eleanor Johnson and Linda Wazny, ESP Coun. Brian Duval, Crown Services Minister Ron Schuler and WSP Coun. Stan Parag.

East St. Paul COPP volunteers operating speed-reader boards during Spotlight on Speed Week


East St. Paul Citizens on Patrol Program volunteers Eleanor Johnson and Linda Wazny manned the speed-reader boards this morning for the first shift of Manitoba Public Insurance’s Spotlight on Speed Week.

The program will run May 1-6 in the RM and other communities across the province, with the goal of raising awareness about the dangers of speeding.

Local COPP volunteers will monitor speed-reader boards at various locations throughout the municipality during the week. Monday’s first location was atop the hill on Birds Hill Road at Silver Springs Park.

East St. Paul Mayor Shelley Hart congratulated Johnson and Wazny for kicking off the program and said their efforts are much appreciated.

"The volunteers in the East St. Paul COPP deserve a round of applause from all of us for the work they do, in conjunction with local RCMP, to keep our community safe,” Hart said.

"The Spotlight on Speed program is important and having these volunteers remind motorists how fast they are going in areas where our citizens, including seniors and children, are outside enjoying the weather especially at this time of year, provides another level of safety.”

Johnson said COPP volunteers step forward for Spotlight on Speed Week because they care about their community, its people and the people that pass through. Johnson said she likes to lead by example when she’s driving in East St. Paul, and she suggested others could do the same.

"I like to be the pace car when I’m driving through East St. Paul,” Johnson said.

"I go the speed limit, put it on cruise and keep it there, I don’t care if they get made at me or not, I’m the pace car.”

Crown Services Minister and St. Paul MLA Ron Schuler said COPP volunteers play a key role in helping keep their communities safe.

"Such activities would not be possible without the work of these dedicated volunteers. These high visual, road-side activities are very effective in sending a road safety message to all motorists,” Schuler said.

Keith Ward, vice-president, Loss Prevention and Communications with MPI, said last year was the deadliest year on Manitoba highways in a decade and some of those crashes were speed related. An average of 21 Manitobans have died in speed-related crashes each year for the past several years. The goal for 2017, he said, is to make our roadways safer for everyone.

"The purpose of Spotlight on Speed Week is to raise awareness about this high-risk driving behaviour and for drivers to self-evaluate and adjust accordingly,” Keith said.

Speeding is also the theme of the fourth UN Global Road Safety Week, held May 8-14. Dozens of countries from around the world, including Canada, will focus on speed and what can be done to address this key risk factor for road traffic deaths and injuries.

Speed contributes to around one-third of all fatal road traffic crashes in high-income countries, and up to half in low- and middle-income countries, according to the UN Road Safety Collaboration.

Last year COPP volunteers contributed 14,000 patrol hours and almost 22,000 volunteer hours to the program.



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