Coronavirus: Increased police patrols on long weekend in Peterborough and the Kawarthas

Click to play video 'Increased police patrols and enforcement of emergency orders on long weekend' Increased police patrols and enforcement of emergency orders on long weekend
Police are stepping up patrols for the Victoria Day long weekend. But as Mark Giunta tells us, the current emergency orders are adding to the list of what police are looking for – May 15, 2020

Peterborough County OPP will deploy an extra two officers per shift to deal with Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act (EMCPA) calls this Victoria Day long weekend as the coronavirus crisis continues.

That’s in addition to highway patrols that greet cottage country traffic on holiday long weekends throughout the summer season.

“Just because certain businesses are reopening, it doesn’t mean any of the health recommendations have changed,” said Const. Joe Ayotte.  “All those recommendations are still in place, and we will be enforcing all of them under the acts for COVID-19.  We have extra officers, who are being brought in, specifically for those cases.”

Ayotte said there will be additional patrols on the roads, trails and lakes this long weekend.

READ MORE: Coronavirus: Peterborough police dealing with calls over suspected emergency order violations

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It’s Canada Road Safety Week, and Peterborough County OPP have already been quite busy dealing with Highway Traffic Act (HTA) violations.

On Wednesday, police observed approximately 80 infractions in the Peterborough area, about half of those were on Highway 115.

“Most were speeding infractions on Highway 115.  There was approximately 40 tickets including a stunt driver, who was charged with travelling at 167 km/h in a 100 zone.  He also had three kids under the age of 3 in the vehicle, which was upsetting,” added Ayotte.

“You’re putting your own life, your kids lives and every other driver in danger, when you travel at those speeds.”

READ MORE: Man charged with impaired driving following traffic stop on Hwy. 7 east of Peterborough: OPP

Peterborough Police Service, which patrols the city as well as the village of Lakefield and Cavan Monaghan Township, will be enforcing the EMCPA this weekend.

“This May long weekend will certainly look and feel different than any other Victoria Day weekend in the recent past,” said police spokesperson Lauren Gilchrist.  “What hasn’t changed is our service’s commitment to ensure our residents can celebrate this weekend safely and follow the laws, including the EMCPA.”

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“We want to remind our community that certain places like the local zoo and playground equipment in local parks remain closed.”

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Seasonal activities to reopen over the weekend in Ontario' Coronavirus: Seasonal activities to reopen over the weekend in Ontario
Coronavirus: Seasonal activities to reopen over the weekend in Ontario – May 14, 2020

All EMCPA-related incidents should be reported to police by calling the non-emergency line at 705-876-1122.

Traffic complaints to Peterborough Police are up by 95 per cent.

“Our officers will be patrolling local streets looking for traffic offences including impaired driving and speeding,” said Gilchrist.

In a video posted to the Peterborough Police Service’s Facebook page, Const. Matt McGill with the traffic unit said the service has received several complaints about off-road vehicles being driven on the roads in Cavan Monaghan Township, specifically in the downtown core of the village of Millbrook.

Officers dedicated to Cavan Monaghan patrols, as well as traffic unit officers, will be targeting off-road vehicles travelling on the roadways in the township.

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“The bottom line is there is not currently a bylaw that allows off-road vehicles to be on the roads.  To be clear, off-road vehicles are not allowed on the roadways in Cavan Monaghan Township,” he said.  “If stopped on a roadway, you can receive a fine of $110 or other infractions that might exist under the HTA or the Off-Road Vehicle Act.”