Yesterday the Quebec transport minister, Julie Boulet, announced plans to for an 18 month pilot project which will see photo radar set up at nine sites across the province and in effect before the end of 2007.
Boulet argued that this was not a measure to just raise money for the government coffers saying that the sites were selected where they have been accidents and that motorists would be warned of a photo radar site ahead. She also stated that the fine money is to be directed to a special fund for highway safety (like making bridges that don’t collapse?).
Currently Alberta is the only other province to have photo radar in operation with both British Columbia and Ontario having scrapped it after its relentless efficiency pissed off the electorate enough to make it a big election issue.
The same piece of legislation would also see the introduction of red light cameras at six locations – if you’ve ever been to Quebec you’ll know that this one will definitely rake in the dollars too!
Also includes stricter speeding and drink-driving penalties
On a roll of highway safety issues, Boulet also announced that they would be doubling the fines and demerit points for speeding, giving a similar – but not as nasty – effect as Ontario’s new stunting laws. 96 km/h in a 50 zone would now see a fine of $480 and 10 demerit points along with an on the spot 7 day suspension of the driver’s permit. No mention on what happens to the vehicle at that time though …
Drinking and driving laws also see a boost in penalties with a new 24 hour permit suspension for a driver caught with as low as a 0.05% alcohol blood level (current impaired driving levels start at 0.08%).
Oh, and transport trucks operating in Quebec will have to be fitted with limiters that cap out their speed at a maximum 105 km/h – something that Ontario is also planning to implement.