Brandon, MB. (CKLQ) - RCMP officers staged a simulation of a near-collision yesterday to show the safe way to pass a roadside emergency.
The RCMP say so much can go wrong, and there is no such thing as a “routine” traffic stop - an officer has to exit the police vehicle, approach a driver with little information about that person, and has to do so while vehicles whip past at highway speeds.
They say when a person is struck by a vehicle travelling 80 km/hr, there is almost no chance of survival.
At 45 km/hr, a person has a 50 per cent chance of survival.
At 30 km/hr, there is a 90 per cent chance a person will survive.
They say this illustrates that slowing down can mean the difference between life or death.
To experience what officers and other emergency personnel encounter roadside, the RCMP set up a scenario that allowed those in attendance to see what the officer sees, to be in the officer’s position when a car comes close to them while they are outside of their vehicle.
“We do all we can to keep officers safe when they are conducting traffic stops,” says Inspector Ed Moreland, Officer in Charge of Traffic Services for the Manitoba RCMP.
Highlights of the "Slow Down, Move Over" law:
If the speed limit is 80 km/hr or higher, motorists must slow to 60 km/hr.
If the speed limit is 79 km/hr or lower, they must slow to 40 km/hr.
On a two-way highway, motorists must wait and only pass the emergency vehicle when it is safe to do so.
If it is a highway with two or more lanes in the same direction, motorists must move to the far lane.
The "Slow Down, Move Over" law came into effect under the Highway Traffic in 2011.
It is a $299 fine and two driver safety rating points for the infraction.
So far this year RCMP have charged more than 400 people under this legislation.