New Excessive Speed Laws in BC

With the recent changes to the excessive speeding laws in BC there has been loads of attention heaped on the few speed freaks who have been caught. As an example, last week the media were given a prime photo op when two motorcyclists were caught traveling at a high rate of speed through a construction zone on Highway 1. Both rider’s bikes were impounded and the police were able to puff out their collective chests and show how they had saved the people of Metro Vancouver from the menace that these speed-crazed demons posed.

Perhaps they did save us. And the facts are clear, there really is no need to travel at 160kmh through a construction zone. But I will tell you there are far more dangerous drivers on our roadways than these two bikers. You know who these people are? It is you and it is me.

Look down at your speedometer the next time you driving along a major four lane road in Metro Vancouver. A road like Lougheed Highway or Broadway or Hastings Street or 12th Ave. You might be surprised at what you see. Did you know that the speed limit on the vast majority of roads in Vancouver is 50kmh? That means that if you are traveling at 70kmh, like many, many of us do, you could be nabbed for speeding. If you are doing 80kmh, you are considered to be doing excessive speed. If you are caught doing 90kmh along Broadway you could receive a $368 fine and have your vehicle impounded for seven days.

Now before you tsk-tsk these speed-freaks, look at your own speedometer tomorrow morning as you are racing to drop the kids off at school. Then look at the speedo again as you are racing across town to get to work before the boss notices you are late again. You might be surprised at how fast you are actually traveling.

Before I step off my soap-box I will say it loud and clear; slow down. It is not only the high-profile speed freaks who get caught who are wreaking havoc on our streets. It is the soccer mom racing around in her van and the harried dad dropping the kids off at school. It is you and it is me.

Speed related injuries and deaths are some of the most easily preventable injuries and deaths. I know that I will be making an effort to slow down. I hope you do as well.


  1. Hear, hear!

    A timely reminder as my speedometer creeps up after about 10 years of “driving like an old lady”. My new car doesn’t like to drive that way – especially when the music is turned up!

    But, someone told me that 10 km faster can be the difference between broken legs and a crushed pelvis. And, before someone says, “That’ll never happen to me,” you may be right. It will be the soccer mom in the van that you hit who will never be playing soccer with her child again. Or the family dog – yours or theirs.

    There is rarely any significant saving in time: I used to race a co-worker down the highway. He wouldn’t budge from the speed limit, wouldn’t rush a yellow light, and I’d be going full out, passing, and timing the lights. I would drive into the parking lot at work, flushed with the success of “winning” the race only to have him pull in beside me before I’d even got my bag out of the back seat. Eventually, I gave up.

    Today’s reminder is a timely one. Thanks, Stacey.

  2. also, all of the people that want to contribute less to global warming should reduce their speed, saving untold litres of gas and reducing the amount of “bad” oil that we have to import! On the topic of harried parents, if they could find a few more minutes in every day, walking your kids to school will also help. If you have to drive your kids, please don’t be one of those parents that leaves their car idling while you wait – save gas and money and the world and shut off your engine.

  3. Very good points from Mr Float. Not only does the walking save gas, it makes for a healthier population and community. AND, not only does the slowing down when driving save injuries and lives, it saves gas. Very good points worth considering in our daily activities.

  4. And, not only does the walking save gas, make for a healthier population and community, it also promotes brain development and health at all ages.

    Walking outdoors is known to decrease dementia symptoms and is essential for developing some of the automaticity in the brain that ultimately supports written output. Add that to increased happiness (it’s been measured in respected research), curiosity, and problem-solving and I’m beginning to think it should be illegal not to walk your kids to school … never mind illegal (and immoral) to idle your vehicle and speed in a school zone.

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