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Police ramp up ticketing on snow truck drivers
Snow clearance vehicles have played a part in a number of fatal tragedies in Montreal, a fact that has led police to slap the truck drivers with an increasing number of fines.
Montreal police handed out 244 tickets to snow truck drivers in 2014, a significant hike from the total of 171 one year prior. Most of the tickets were given to drivers who failed to stop at red lights and stop signs.
The snow removal drivers are made to feel the personal pecuniary pain, as they are forced to pay the tickets from their own pocket.
Montreal blue collar union president Michel Parent was quick to point out in an interview with CTV Montreal that the miscreant motorists were mostly hired workers, not Montreal city staffers.
The hired guns are compelled to rush because they are compensated by the amount of snow they haul rather than by the amount of time they put in to the task.
The reality is very different for city blue collar staffers. "If a city worker rushes his work, he just cuts into his overtime pay," said Parent.
Montreal police noted that four deaths in recent years were the result of incidents involving snow trucks, including three in 2009 alone.
They now recognize the snow trucks a potential threat to pedestrians and winter cyclists, as reflected in the hike in tickets handed out.
"It's simply to send a message out there that, yes we want streets cleaned fast, but they have to be cleaned also in a safe manner," said Montreal Police Commander Andre Durocher.
Head of Blue Collar union on speeding during snow removal: "We have no incentive to speed. We would make less overtime." @CTVMontreal— Rob Lurie (@RLurieCTV) January 26, 2015