The Municipality of Shelburne Council made the decision at their Council meeting held December 9th to send a letter to the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal, the Honourable Lloyd Hines, requesting the Department consider increasing the fines and penalties for those motorists who fail to stop when school buses red lights are flashing and the stop sign deployed.
“It has come to Council’s attention that there continues to be a number of incidents throughout the Municipality of Shelburne where drivers are not stopping for a school bus that has its red lights flashing and the stop sign deployed,” says Warden Penny Smith.
Over the past couple of years, the local RCMP Detachment has received numerous complaints of this occurring. Council felt reaching out to the Department, requesting they consider increasing the fines and penalties for this offence, along with requesting that cameras be standard equipment on buses, would help make drivers be more attentive. With cameras on buses, any vehicle not stopping would be recorded and the make and license plate can be sent to the RCMP for enforcement.
“The safety of our children is utmost in our minds for making this request, to help ensure that our families and community are not dealing with a potential tragedy,” says Warden Penny Smith.
The Municipality is requesting that the first offense fine be increased from $410 to $500 with the addition of four demerit points and that second and third offences would also see appropriate increases.
“Personally, I would have preferred to see the fine for first offence be increased to $1,000; however, in consultation with the local RCMP Detachment, it was suggested that fines should be reflective of those that are applicable to distracted or dangerous driving and that the fine being increased to $500 would be more appropriate,” says Warden Smith.