Alberta puts commuting families first with new Act
The Redford government is taking action to keep children safe in playground zones and increase safety on Alberta highways.
If passed, the Enhancing Safety on Alberta Roads Act will let municipalities set local rules for playground zones, allow for designated highway lanes to deal with unique traffic flow problems and ensure that Alberta’s traffic safety legislation is strong, clear and consistent.
Bill 32, Enhancing Safety on Alberta Roads Act, will amend the Traffic Safety Act and the Highways Development Protection Act.
“I am pleased to bring forward legislation that furthers our commitment to the safety of families and communities. Working with Alberta drivers, municipalities and stakeholders we will continue to help keep our children and Albertans safe.”
Safer for Children
Under current legislation, municipalities have the authority to set the hours during which school zone speed limits are in effect. They have asked to have the same authority for playground zones.
- Proposed amendments will give municipalities the authority to modify the period in which speed restrictions in playground zones are in effect. Following passage of the legislation, municipalities could align playground and school zone hours to suit local needs, reducing confusion for drivers and providing better protection for children.
Municipalities currently have the authority to designate lane use on municipal roads, but the province does not have the same authority for provincial highways.
- Bill 32 will give the province the authority to designate lane use on provincial highways. This will allow Alberta Transportation to optimize highway infrastructure and deal with unique traffic-flow issues such as priority bus lanes, High Occupancy Vehicles, and designated lanes for slow-moving vehicles.
Other amendments will help align legislation with changes that have been made to the Criminal Code of Canada over the years and ensure Alberta’s traffic safety legislation is strong, clear and consistent.
This legislation is part of the ongoing enhancements that have been made to our traffic safety legislation in the past few years to:
- prohibit drivers from being distracted by cell phones or other behaviours that take their eyes off the road
- further discourage drivers from getting behind the wheel when they’re impaired
Alberta Transportation continues to work with its partners to implement the province’s Traffic Safety Plan, which supports safer families and communities. Since Alberta launched its first Traffic Safety Plan in 2007, the number of fatalities on our roads has decreased 25 per cent, even though the provincial population has continued to grow.
This Bill supports the Redford Government’s priorities of investing in families and communities, and building Alberta. This year the government will invest $1.4 billion in Alberta’s highway network as part of the Building Alberta Plan.
Our government was elected to keep building Alberta, to live within its means and to fight to open new markets for Alberta’s resources. We will continue to deliver the responsible change Albertans voted for.