Fantino might scrap media traffic blitzes; says highway safety is no joke

TORONTO — Ontario’s plainspoken police commissioner has had enough of all the roadside lights and TV cameras during vehicle inspection blitzes and has recommended a tougher, no-nonsense approach in catching dangerous drivers.

According to Canadian Press, OPP Commissioner Julian Fantino has written an open letter on the police force’s website, saying he will do away with the OPP’s media-relations strategy of having media present at roadside blitzes — a staple of long weekend newscasts,

Instead of the casual, sometimes comical, media approach, Fantino says the OPP will be “unrelenting” in taking unsafe drivers and vehicles off the road.

He told CP that he doesn’t want to hear any more “humorous stories about those who compromise public safety” — colorful anecdotes that he complained members of the media tend to focus on. “I think it trivializes the carnage and the reality of the danger that’s out there.”

Fantino’s new approach doesn’t seem to be in line with the Ministry of Transportation, however.

Transportation Minister Donna Cansfield told CP this week the traffic blitzes have been very successful in raising public awareness about the dangers driving.

The Ontario Safety League said it would be a mistake to lose what they consider “a very effective messaging strategy when it comes to public safety,” CP reports.

— from Canadian Press

Have your say

This is a moderated forum. Comments will no longer be published unless they are accompanied by a first and last name and a verifiable email address. (Today's Trucking will not publish or share the email address.) Profane language and content deemed to be libelous, racist, or threatening in nature will not be published under any circumstances.