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Long weekend preparations pay off

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By Claire Piech

Summer appears to be off to a positive start, with no serious incidents occurring during the May long weekend.

“Even though we had 181 calls for service, there were no major incidents in the village itself. And areas of concern were addressed quickly,” said Constable Anne-Marie Gallop.

The predictably rowdy weekend was busy for RCMP officers, with calls for service including 32 disturbance complaints, 25 mischief and noise complaints, 11 traffic complaints, nine accidents, and 12 24-hour driving suspensions.

Gallop was not able to report the number of arrests over the weekend.

One of the weekend’s most troubling incidents was a hit and run accident on Highway 99 near Meadow Park Sports Centre. A female cyclist was hit on her bicycle Friday and is suffering from non-life threatening injuries.

The 25-year-old from Whistler was unable to identify the offender, but described the vehicle as dark in colour, possibly either a SUV or a station wagon. Police are asking anyone with more information on the incident to contact the Whistler RCMP.

A car crash on Highway 99 Sunday night was also an area of concern, and resulted in five people being sent to the hospital.

“Last year, Sunday was a lot more laid back,” said Gallop, adding that the closed highway added to the traffic volume this year when people returned home on Sunday night.

Despite these incidents, Gallop felt good about the weekend. “The increased police presence definitely had a positive impact on such a high call volume,” she said.

Twenty additional officers were in the Whistler area over the May long weekend, including bike patrols, police dog services, an on-foot emergency response team, and plain-clothed officers. Random road checks were also instigated along Highway 99 to monitor driving from Lions Bay to Whistler.

The RCMP has been working with the Respect Whistler Committee over the past year to address concerns by local businesses about the rowdy behaviour typical of this holiday weekend.

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