In Calgary, There's No Looking for a Detour From Your Route!

January 27, 2015

No Luck Finding A Detour

If your future travels take you through Calgary, better make sure you take your checkbook along. The city council is instituting a steep hike in the fine for straying from designated trucking routes.

Local regulations are designed to keep trucks and other heavy vehicles on the city's major roads and thoroughfares. The intent is to prevent noise and obstacles from disrupting quieter residential areas.

The $100 fine that accompanies infractions is apparently not enough to motivate compliance by truck drivers. According to a report submitted to the council's transportation committee last December, many drivers continue to seek detours and short cuts, treating the financial penalty as a "cost of doing business".

Based on this information, the city plans to raise the fine, which will jump to $500. The police, trucking sector and local attorneys believe that this change will be sufficient to discourage off-route driving. The new amount is more consistent with other fines for commercial vehicles.

Calgary is not the first community to face such an issue. In August 2013 the city council in Ocean City, NJ passed an ordinance raising fines for trucks over four tons that deviate from posted truck routes. The measure was taken after residents raised concerns that such detours posed a safety threat to a nearby bike path and other areas.

The fine increase was considered as a last resort after other methods to resolve the situation proved unsuccessful. Local police tried to improve compliance by use of a traffic diverter and also reached out to trucking company owners to enlist their cooperation.

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