Monday, April 6, 2015

On the Road

Live and Let Give

Chilliwack Speedwatch volunteers clock over 1100 hours making streets safer

Released by ICBC/Voice file photo


CBC relies on a valuable ally in B.C. communities to help reduce crashes, prevent auto crime and educate drivers – volunteers.


In recognition of National Volunteer Week (April 12 to 18), ICBC is thanking Chilliwack volunteers for their dedication to helping reduce speeding, distracted driving and auto crime incidents in their community.


“We’re tremendously grateful to every one of our volunteers in Chilliwack for their hard - work and commitment to deliver these important road safety programs,” said Mike Weightman, local ICBC road safety coordinator. “On behalf of everyone at ICBC, thank you. You are truly making our community a safer place to live and undoubtedly inspiring others to do more.”

“Volunteers make an invaluable contribution to the well-being of our community,” said Chilliwack MLA John Martin. “Vehicle drivers in Chilliwack benefit greatly from the work of these volunteers who commit their time and efforts to driver speed assessment, driver education, and crime prevention.”

ICBC worked with volunteers to introduce the Cell Watch program in 2013 and last year alone, volunteers in Chilliwack spent 110 hours to help reduce distracted driving. Volunteers stand near the roadside with signs to remind drivers to leave their phones alone and conduct roadside surveys to observe drivers and their behaviours.

The information helps ICBC and police better understand the issue at a local level and to develop initiatives to combat distracted driving.

Speed Watch volunteers in Chilliwack spent 1,100 hours in 2014 using radar and speed-reader boards supplied by ICBC to show drivers the speed they’re actually travelling. Volunteers usually set up at high crash locations and school and playground zones and often partner with police who will ticket speeding drivers who don’t slow down after seeing their speed on the reader board.

Volunteers in Chilliwack spent 2,200 hours in 2014 delivering the Lock Out Auto Crime program and Stolen Auto Recovery program. Lock Out Auto Crime volunteers handout notices that resemble parking tickets onto the windshields of vehicles, many with valuables in sight, offering drivers tips to protect themselves from becoming the victim of auto crime.

These volunteers also operate the Stolen Auto Recovery program in Chilliwack and check vehicles in 2014 to look for signs of theft and help identify stolen vehicles. Volunteers throughout the Lower Mainland also helped recover over 150 stolen vehicles.

To learn more about how you can get involved and help keep your community safe, contact your local road safety coordinator, Mike Weightman, at 604-702-3837.


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