Highways and Public Works Minister Richard Mostyn talks to media at the corner of Alsek Drive near Aishihik Road in Whitehorse on Feb. 27 where a new mobile radar sign was placed. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)

Turn that frown upside down: New radar monitors drivers’ speed

The sign, complete with emojis to tell you how you’re doing, will move between 10 locations in Whitehorse

Territorial and city officials will soon know exactly how fast vehicles are travelling through different parts of town, beginning in Riverdale.

On Feb. 27, the Yukon government, City of Whitehorse and RCMP unveiled the territory’s new mobile radar sign on Alsek Drive near Aishihik Road.

With a digital smiley or frowny face, the sign tells drivers whether they are speeding or traveling within the speed limit, displaying the exact speed below the face.

The device also records the speed of vehicles and combined with targeted RCMP enforcement the goal is to alter driver behaviour and make things safer on the road, Yukon Highways and Public Works Minister Richard Mostyn told reporters at a press conference to showcase the technology.

About nine other officials from the territory, city and RCMP joined him, many decked out in new orange, high-vis vests for the occasion. Some wore hard hats.

Mostyn said the radar sign, and a second that will be coming into the city, is set to be moved between 10 different locations known as high-infraction locations in Whitehorse. The signs will be in place for about four weeks at a time before being moved to the next spot.

While the first site is in Riverdale, Whitehorse Mayor Dan Curtis said exactly where the signs move will not be known until they’re moved and in a new location.

“I’m looking forward to slowing things down a bit,” Curtis said, noting there’s been some success in vehicles moving slower outside Takhini Elementary School where similar radar has been installed.

Between 2011 and 2015, 36 per cent of on-road fatalities had “excessive speed” or “over the speed limit” cited as a contributing factor, Mostyn said. He did not say how many such fatalities there were in the territory at that time.

Speeding ticket convictions equate to an average of 45 per cent of all Motor Vehicles Act convictions per year. A 2018 press release from the Yukon government stated there are an average of 1,000 speeding tickets issued each year.

Mostyn said the data collected from the radar will be used to track whether it is effective in slowing vehicles down as time goes on.

Once data from all locations is collected, officials will move the radar around depending on where it’s deemed most needed.

Both Mostyn and Curtis emphasized the partnership between the Yukon government, City of Whitehorse and RCMP in the efforts to educate, build awareness, and work to modify driver behaviour.

“We have heard from residents and understand that the safety of our roadways is a top issue,” Curtis said. “The City of Whitehorse is a proud partner of this exciting and important initiative that will address traffic safety concerns.”

The territory spent $20,000 on the radar.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at stephanie.waddell@yukon-news.com

speed cameraspeed limits

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Yukon Party leader Currie Dixon addressing media at a press conference on April 8. The territorial election is on April 12. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Getting to know Currie Dixon and the Yukon Party platform

A closer look at the party leader and promises on the campaign trail

Yukon NDP leader Kate White, surrounded by socially distanced candidates, announces her platform in Whitehorse on March 29. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Getting to know Kate White and the Yukon NDP Platform

A detailed look at the NDP platform and Kate White’s leadership campaign this election

Crystal Schick/Yukon News
Sandy Silver announces the territorial election in Whitehorse. Silver is seeking a second term as premier and third term as Klondike MLA. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Getting to know Sandy Silver and the Yukon Liberal platform

Yukon Liberal Leader Sandy Silver is vying for a second term as… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
This week at city hall

A look at issues discussed by Whitehorse city council at its April 6 meeting.

Point-in-Time homeless count planned this month

Volunteers will count those in shelters, short-term housing and without shelter in a 24-hour period.

The Yukon’s new ATIPP Act came into effect on April 1. Yukoners can submit ATIPP requests online or at the Legislative Assembly building. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News file)
New ATIPP Act in effect as of April 1

The changes promise increased government transparency

A new conservancy in northern B.C. is adjacent to Mount Edziza Provincial Park. (Courtesy BC Parks)
Ice Mountain Lands near Telegraph Creek, B.C., granted conservancy protection

The conservancy is the first step in a multi-year Tahltan Stewardship Initiative

Yukon RCMP reported a child pornography-related arrest on April 1. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press file)
Whitehorse man arrested on child pornography charges

The 43-year-old was charged with possession of child pornography and making child pornography

Team Yukon athletes wave flags at the 2012 Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony in Whitehorse. The postponed 2022 event in Wood Buffalo, Alta., has been rescheduled for Jan. 29 to Feb. 4, 2023. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News file)
New dates set for Arctic Winter Games

Wood Buffalo, Alta. will host event Jan. 29 to Feb. 4, 2023

Victoria Gold Corp. has contributed $1 million to the First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun after six months of production at the Eagle Gold Mine. (Submitted/Victoria Gold Corp.)
Victoria Gold contributes $1 million to First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun

Victoria Gold signed a Comprehensive Cooperation and Benefits Agreement in 2011

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley speaks to media in Whitehorse on October 30, 2020. Hanley is now encouraging Yukon to continue following health regulations, noting it could still be some time before changes to restrictions are made. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
No active COVID cases in Yukon

Hanley highlights concerns over variants, encourages vaccinations

Most Read