SASKATOON – The Saskatoon Police Service (SPS) is unveiling a new social media initiative Tuesday that will impact where they conduct speed enforcement by allowing residents to vote on potential locations.
“It’s a traffic initiative that will use Twitter’s new polling feature to give the community a chance to voice their input into where we conduct some of our traffic enforcement,” said Kelsie Fraser, a spokesperson for the SPS.
“We’re always looking for ways to improve our service to the community,” she added.
The SPS plans to highlight three locations on Twitter and allow users a 24-hour window to vote on where the enforcement should occur. The next day, officers will set up in the area and report the results. The initiative can be found using #SlowDownYXE.
“We need safe streets and to have safe streets you have to have people paying attention, you have to slow down the speeds,” said Staff Sgt. Judy McHarg of the SPS traffic unit.
In 2014, Saskatoon police issued 11,330 municipal speeding by-law tickets, according to a year-end report. Officials say the number hasn’t changed much over the years.
“We’re seeing the same, we hold our own all things traffic tickets,” said McHarg.
Even with the new effort, McHarg said she didn’t expect the number of speed violations to go down. Instead, the move will help the SPS better engage with the public on the issue of dangerous driving.
“Truly with this new initiative that we’re planning with the twitter account, I still think that we’re still going to get our same number of tickets that we do on a daily basis,” said McHarg.
However, enforcement penalty may be the most effective way to curb speeding, according to Carl Kuhnke a transportation infrastructure expert who applauded the SPS move.
“There’s only so much that design can do to fix that and after that it’s enforcement,” said Kuhnke.
“They are now going to the citizens and saying, you people are out there driving every day, you know the intersections where everyone’s going 100 instead of 60.”
© 2016 Shaw Media