Manitoba RCMP say extreme highway speeding 'has to stop' in year with heavy fatalities

If you’ve noticed Manitoba RCMP tweeting more often about speeders on the province’s highways, you’re not alone.

The police force says it’s been dealing with a seemingly endless number of extreme speeders — and that they have many more examples than the ones they choose to share online.

RCMP Sgt. Paul Manaigre told 680 CJOB one of the biggest frustrations is that police know the speeders they catch probably aren’t breaking traffic laws for the first time.

“The odds are astronomically low that it’s the first time they’ve sped, and a police officer happened to be there,” he said.

“You can imagine how much (speeding) is out there that we’re not getting, so that’s the concerning part.

“It’s probably no coincidence that we’ve had the highest number of fatalities… I don’t know if this is ever, but we’re looking at almost 70 deaths already for 2020. Is there a correlation with the speeding? Probably.”

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Manaigre said in some places, like the Perimeter Highway, catching speeders is almost as easy as shooting fish in a barrel — but that’s not the point. People need to get the message.

“Even in the past week, we’ve had, I believe, six fatalities, and there’s usually a link between speeding or alcohol or (no) seatbelts — those high-risk behaviours.”

Recent high-speed scofflaws highlighted by RCMP include a 40-year-old man who blamed his speed of 194 km/h in a 100 zone on Highway 75 on “down-shifting,” and asked officers not to give him a ticket.

He was handed a $1,280 fine plus a licence review with Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI).

A pair of drivers near the west Perimeter Highway on Friday morning were clocked at over 150 km/h, weaving in and out of traffic, due to an incident sparked by a middle finger salute, police said.

The two were pulled over and now each faces a careless driving charge and a serious offence notice.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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