The RCMP were called out to a number of incidents involving motor vehicle collisions or vehicles going off the road over the past week, many of which were the result of drivers not respecting the conditions or driving with improper equipment - no snow tires in some cases, or worn out all-season tires or snow tires that fall below the required 3.5 millimetres of tread.
"We are encouraging people to use restraint and proper snow tires or snow chains when driving in those conditions," said Sergeant Shaun LeMay of the Whistler RCMP. "That requires a 3.5 mm tread depth, which means snow tires or all-season tires that are rated for mud and snow."
People are also driving too fast for the conditions, said LeMay. "Speed limits are rated for optimal driving conditions, and just because the road is rated at 60 or 80 km/h doesn't mean you can drive that fast in a snow storm. You have to drive to the road conditions, the visibility, the time of day and the amount of traffic."
Some six weather-related calls were serious enough to require the RCMP's attention.
On Friday, Nov. 26 at 6:20 a.m. the RCMP received a call that a vehicle had gone off the road heading onto Pinecrest Road and ended up in the ditch. No charges were laid, but police determined that the tires were down to the wear bars, which is a ticketable offence.
At 12:23 p.m., they attended a two-vehicle collision at Glacier Lane and Glacier Drive. A car lost control and hit a bus. There were no injuries but a 31-year-old male was charged for failing to produce a drivers' licence and operating an improperly equipped vehicle.
At 3:36 p.m. that day the RCMP were called to another two-vehicle collision on Alpine Way, near Whistler Secondary School. A vehicle heading towards the highway lost traction and struck a vehicle heading the other direction. Once again there were no injuries and the speeds were slow enough that the damage was relatively minor. However, the 17-year-old driver of the first vehicle was charged with driving too fast for the road conditions - a fine of $167.
At 7:52 a.m. on Nov. 27, the RCMP attended another collision involving two vehicles. In this case the vehicles were driving downhill on Whistler Way towards Highway 99, where no left turn is permitted. The first driver braked in order to make a left turn, and was struck by another vehicle that was turning right towards the village.
The driver of the first vehicle, a Honda Accord, got out to inspect the damage and then drove away. The RCMP are investigating the driver for leaving the scene of an accident and want to hear from anyone who may have witnessed the accident. The vehicle should have some damage on the back right corner.