Traffic ticket an embarrassment
On a recent visit to Radium in search of sunshine, we met a very nice British couple and, assuming we were also tourists they asked where we were from. We told them Canmore; “Lovely Canmore” as we always refer to our hometown.
Her first response was to look at her husband and grimace. Turns out she got a ticket at the four-way stop on Main Street for $287. Yes, that’s the fine for a stop sign infraction, $287!
They had just finished dinner out and were headed down Main Street. As she approached the stop she “slowed down” (her words) and clearly remembers commenting to her husband on how quiet the street was and how no one else was out (well this is Canmore after 8 p.m. we’re talking about).
She felt she had slowed down sufficiently and since there were no other cars in the intersection she proceeded left. And there he was, parked and waiting. She expected perhaps a warning or at most a small fine, but $287?
Could this not have been an excellent opportunity for educating just one of our many international visitors on how to proceed through a four-way stop?
Turns out after speaking with a constable (I did my research) they do have discretion and could have issued something for “failure to obey traffic laws” which is about half the price. Don’t get me wrong, I believe people who speed or drive dangerously should be ticketed and I have never considered these types of tickets to be a money grab. But this sounded completely different. We would like to think the officer could have used a little discretion and handled this situation differently.
People who travel and have a good experience tell a few close friends about it, but people who travel and have a bad experience tell everyone. Most people she has shared the story with have told her not to pay the fine and we concurred.
How much time and resources are being wasted on these types of tickets? To top it all off and add insult to injury, after he gave her the ticket he asked if she would be around on Canada Day since there was a great parade and she could see him marching in his Red Serge.
At this point she felt he was simply rubbing salt in the wound. They left Canmore the next day with a less than favourable opinion. What a shame.
It is no big secret that many of us in this town depend heavily on the tourism and hospitality industries. We are excited about the launch of a new brand by Canmore Business and Tourism with the tag line “Canada’s Global Destination For Mountain Lifestyle”. I’m not so sure over zealous constables trying to make their quota are part of this new campaign.
Jo-Anne Kobelt and Louis Beaudoin,
In order to post comments on our web site, you must validate your email address. An email was sent to you when you registered that included an activation link. If you have not yet done so, please click on the link to activate your account.
If you did not receive your activation email, please click here to have it resent.