First responders on site investigating an auto incident. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)

Vancouver Island police happy they can sweep minor auto accidents to side of the road

Police can now avoid paperwork, make getting traffic going the priority in minor crashes

The B.C. government’s announcement that police are now free to sweep minor traffic accidents to the side of the road and get traffic moving is described as “very forward thinking” by Vancouver Island officers on the ground.

This comes after B.C. decided to update the threshold for mandatory reporting of property-damage-only collisions (PDOs).

“Having traffic back up because of a minor collision where nobody was hurt doesn’t help anyone – and worse, it can lead frustrated drivers to take steps that are unsafe,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “[This] increase in the damage threshold for these kinds of crashes is long overdue and will allow people and police officers to move damaged vehicles out of the way without delay.”

ALSO READ: Central Saanich Police stop impaired driver doing 108 km/h in a 50 zone

Before, if damage exceeded $1,000 for motor vehicles, $600 for motorcycles or $100 for bicycles, the attending officers had to complete a special form before the end of their shift.

The reporting threshold is now $10,000 per PDO, regardless of vehicle type, in the expectation that traffic will be allowed to flow quickly, after provincial highways are unblocked.

“The value of vehicles has increased exponentially since those values were set,” said Sidney/North Saanich RCMP Const. Meighan de Pass. “Even a molded plastic bumper these days can cost over $1,000 so almost all accidents needed paperwork, slowing traffic.”

The threshold increase went into effect Friday.

ALSO READ: More than 63,700 seriously injured in B.C. workplaces, tallying over $4 billion in costs over 10 years

Police will continue to file a mandatory, written report with ICBC for every crash they attend that results in death or injury.

“Police officers will continue to attend collisions involving minor property damage at their discretion – for example, if questions arise about driver impairment or who’s at fault,” said Chief Const. Neil Dubord, chair of the B.C. Association of Chiefs of Police traffic safety committee. “However, lifting the threshold for mandatory, written reports when officers do attend will help clear crash scenes much more quickly. In turn, it may lower risks for those working at the scene and motorists alike.”

The reporting threshold increase is expected to save time for police officers and ICBC. Most PDO reports are because of collisions involving passenger vehicles.



nick.murray@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Northbound lanes re-open along Malahat after small rockslide near Goldstream

Drivers asked to use caution, clean-up crews have finished on-site

Port Alberni cat stars in national fundraising calendar

Jax the cat was one of 13 pets selected from nearly 45,000 entries

BCHL’s Alberni Valley Bulldogs move game to Parksville due to ice rink closure

Prince George and Bulldogs to battle it out Tuesday, Nov. 19 at Oceanside Place

Port Alberni language pole becomes ‘spiritual journey’

Funding shortfall could prove to be saving grace for project

Teen with cancer whose viral video urged Canadians to vote has died, uncle tweets

Maddison Yetman had been looking forward to voting in her first federal election since junior high school

Rowing Canada, UVic investigate celebrated coach for harassment, abuse

Lily Copeland says she felt intimidated and trapped by Williams

Cleanup in the works after tanker truck fire leads to oil spill in B.C.’s Peace region

The province said the majority of the spilled oil likely burned away in the fire.

Fisherman missing near Lake Cowichan’s Shaw Creek

Family is asking for everyone and anyone to keep their eyes open,… Continue reading

BC VIEWS: Action needed on healthcare workplace violence

While we’ve been talking about it, the number of B.C. victims has only grown

Closing arguments begin in B.C. case launched in 2009 over private health care

Dr. Day said he illegally opened the Cambie Surgery Centre in 1996 in order to create more operating-room time

MacLean says “Coach’s Corner is no more” following Cherry’s dismissal from Hockey Night

Cherry had singled out new immigrants in for not honouring Canada’s veterans and fallen soldiers

MacKinnon powers Avs to 5-4 OT win over Canucks

Vancouver battled back late to pick up single point

Poole’s Land finale: Tofino’s legendary ‘hippie commune’ being dismantled

Series of land-use fines inspire owner Michael Poole to sell the roughly 20-acre property.

Most Read