With Wednesday evening's snowfall causing slippery road conditions across Airdrie and the surrounding areas, motorists are reminded to give road workers room to work.

With enacted changes to the province'sTraffic Safety Act as of September 2023, motorists are reminded that if they are driving in the lane closest to any roadside worker vehicle stopped at the side of the road with its lights flashing, drivers must slow down to 60 km/h or the posted speed limit, whichever is lower. Drivers must also move over to the far lane if it’s safe to do so and take reasonable steps to allow other drivers to move over as well.

One should also remember to not attempt to pass a snowplow when:

  • the view along the side of the snowplow is obstructed
  • passing would impede the operation of the snowplow
  • the act of passing cannot be done safely

The new roadside worker safety rules now apply to all roadside workers, including first responders, tow truck operators, highway maintenance workers and snowplow operators. According to the province, failure to comply with these rules can result in a fine and three demerit points:

  • $243 and three demerit points for failing to slow down to the maximum speed limit when passing stopped roadside workers.

  • $243 fine and three demerit points for failing to allow other drivers to move into a traffic lane farther from a stopped emergency vehicle, tow truck or roadside work vehicle.

  • A fine of $324 and three demerit points for unsafe passing of snowplows.

Statistics previously provided by the province show that during the winter of 2022-23, there were 37 collisions involving a government-contracted snowplow. Between March 2018 and March 2021, there were approximately 130 collisions involving snowplows contracted by Transportation and Economic Corridors.

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