Alberta's government announced yesterday (April 17) that the previous one-year blue light pilot program will be extended for another five years.
The blue light pilot program allows tow truck drivers in Alberta to add blue lights (along with amber) to their vehicles to improve driver safety and be more visible.
Devin Dreeshen, Minister of Transportation and Economic Corridors, made the announcement.
"There's currently been a pilot project it's lasted for about a year. But this is a five-year commitment for the blue light pilot projects so that our tow truck drivers will be able to have Amber and blue lights when they are responding to a scene."
These changes are in addition to new rules under the Traffic Safety Amendment Act, which come into effect Sept. 1, requiring drivers to slow down and move over when passing highway workers.
From 2018 to 2021, there have been 128 collisions involving just snowplows explained Dreeshen and since 2019 alone, about 17 Serious roadside incidents and 39 near misses.
"There's an urgent need for this for increased visibility. And so extending this blue light pilot project, we believe is responding to industry needs and to the needs of our roadside safety workers to make sure that at the end of the day, they can go home after their shift."
Come this fall (a date has yet to be set) drivers will also have to abide by some new regulations on Alberta roads.
- Slow down to 60 km/h or the posted speed limit, whichever is lower, in all lanes travelling in the same direction on multi-lane highways and roadways.
- Slow down to 60 km/h or the posted speed limit, whichever is lower, when travelling in either direction on single-lane highways and roadways.