More tickets, heftier fines considered to sway snow zone violators in Winnipeg
The city is looking at ways to boost compliance of snow plow zones in Winnipeg, which could see more tickets and heftier fines.
In a couple of months, snow will cover Cari-Ann Critchley’s Winnipeg street. The truck owner said she moves her vehicle when a residential snow plow is declared, but not everyone does.
“They should move so there’s not ruts and lumps to jump over,” said Critchley.
The city has the authority to fine and courtesy-tow drivers to another street for not moving their vehicles during a snow zone ban. But it appears those measures are still not swaying enough car owners to get out of the way.
According to a new report, the average number of tickets and tows during a residential snow clearing operation is increasing.
In 2018, there was an average of 308 tickets per enforcement shift and 2,947 tows per plow. That jumped in 2019 to 359 tickets and 6,147 tows, and again in 2020 to 407 tickets and 7,851 tows.
Infrastructure Committee Chair and Councillor Matt Allard said he struggles to understand why some people aren’t getting it.
“I think in the case of those Winnipeggers who aren’t moving, for whatever reason they’ve forgotten, they haven’t gotten the message,” said Allard.
The report is recommending ways to boost compliance.
First, it recommends allowing bylaw officers to use automated licence plate reader technology to issue tickets in the mail, instead of manually filling out a ticket and sticking it on a windshield.
“That will get the word out as people get tickets and I have a feeling that they’re going to be much more efficient,” said Allard.
There is also a recommendation to increase fines from $150 to $200, and $112.50 to $150 for the early payment option.
Allard said he wants to see the fine hikes referred to the budget process.
Critchley isn’t convinced the fine increase is enough to sway snow zone violators.
“Pretty big jump, but I still don’t know that that’s enough incentive for people to move,” said Critchley.