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Towns erect screen to remind drivers of their speed

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WESTVILLE – As the SUV drives past, its speed flashes on a screen, reminding the driver to slow down as they enter a 50 km/h zone in the town.

“It’s a good reminder. They do work,” said Const. Paul Veenhuis of the Stellarton Police Service. “It’s a proactive thing.”

articleConst. Paul Veenhuis of the Stellarton Police and Sgt. Howie Dunbar of the Westville Police show a new radar sign that has been purchased by the departments for use in the two towns to remind motorists to drive the posted speed limit. CAROL DUNN – THE NEWS

For just over a week now, a radar sign that monitors traffic speeds and collects information on each vehicle that passes through the area has been set up in Westville. The sign is a joint project between the Westville and Stellarton police forces.

Police Chief Don Hussher said it’s proven to be successful and an asset for calming traffic. “We have a lot of complaints for speeding,” he said.

“It gives us the statistics. It gives us actual speeds in the area and gives the opportunity to monitor the area and collect data and determine what type of enforcement is needed,” he said.

Two years ago the police services borrowed one of the radar signs from the Halifax Regional Police as a pilot project. That sign collected data but didn’t display driving speeds.

Because the project was successful, the departments purchased a sign of their own, and are erecting it at different locations around the two towns as a reminder for motorists to slow down and heed the posted speed limits.

Hussher said the sign performs multi functions, including collecting information from traffic that is important for law enforcement, and signalling drivers that a violation is occurring. Police are able to utilize this information for investigations.

The area is clearly marked, and the sign warns the driver when an infraction occurs. “The driver has no excuse.”

Hussher said the sign is very effective in school zones where the speed limit is reduced to 30 km/h. It will also be useful in areas where town crews are doing maintenance or other work on the roads.

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