Firefighters worried about speed bumps
Montreal firefighters say they're concerned about the number of speed bumps have been cropping up in some boroughs.
In some boroughs, speed bumps have become the traffic-calming measure of choice, with proponents citing the safety of pedestrians.
But Chris Ross, the vice-president of the Montreal firefighters' union, is making the case that the speed bumps can have an adverse effect on safety in emergency situations.
"You have to realize when going to a fire call or a medical emergency, time is of the essence," Ross says, "and if you've ever gone over one with your car, you have to slow down quite a bit. But if you go over one with a 21-ton fire truck, you have to come to a stop."
And having to stop several times per block, he says, essentially negates the right-of-way advantage that emergency vehicles get.
He points out, too, that firefighters themselves are at risk of injury, particularly if they happen to be deployed to an unfamiliar neighborhood, as they often are.
The fire department has long tried to call attention to the issue, pointing out that decisions to introduce speed bumps are often done without the department's input.