Police seize 19 vehicles for excessive speeding on Malahat

Nineteen drivers had vehicles seized for seven days for excessive speeding as the Capital Regional District’s Integrated Road Safety Unit carried out checks on the Malahat on Sunday.

The top speed measured was 151 km/h in an 80 km/h zone, although most of the excessive speeds were in the middle-to-high 130s, said IRSU Acting Staff Sgt. Ron Cronk, who described the vehicles waiting for tows as looking “like the ferry lineup.”

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Vehicles are subject to being towed for travelling 41 km/h over the speed limit.

Officers were set up just south of Aspen Road in the Tunnel Hill area from about 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Cronk said. Speed limits there are largely 80 kilometres per hour, 70 km/h in parts, he said.

The total number of vehicles seized was “quite high” for a single session, said Cronk, adding driving conditions were far from ideal. “Roads were a little bit wet. There was some fog and overcast.”

The fine for doing 41 to 60 km/h over the limit is $368, while travelling from 21 to 40 km/h over the limit is $196. The fine for doing one to 20 km/h over the limit is $138.

Cronk said officers don’t leave people in unsafe situations on the roadside after their vehicles are seized.

“[Often] the tow operators are pretty flexible and they can give them a ride down into West Shore.

“Or other times they’ll have friends drive up and pick them up. We can arrange to get taxis up there.”

Cronk said millions of dollars have been spent to upgrade the stretch of highway that was under scrutiny.

“The road itself is as safe as we can make it,” he said. “It’s the drivers that have to now participate in the safe program.

“They have to do their part and clearly they’re not holding up their end.”

jwbell@timescolonist.com

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