Castlegar RCMP officers were on the scene Monday afternoon impounding a vehicle for “stunting” on Columbia Avenue. (Betsy Kline/Castlegar News)

Editorial: Stop speeding and stunting on Columbia Avenue

The dramatic burnout, tailgate, speed move and subsequent pull over and impounding of a truck on Columbia Avenue Monday afternoon proved to be just one glaring example of dangerous driving on the main road in Castlegar.

We have front-row seats from our office of the daily madness. At least once per hour, a pickup truck will gun it through the red light on the outside lane headed south to pass a vehicle in the inside lane. If a vehicle were to actually start rolling on the green light from 18th turning onto Columbia, they would get smoked.

There have been several near misses in the past few weeks. With many pedestrians crossing at the intersection at 18th Street during the day, it’s a terrible incident waiting to happen. Of course, this is just one busy intersection in Castlegar. There are several others along the highway that are likely home to similar dangerous activities.

Maybe the Ministry of Transport needs to set up a red-light camera to catch speeders and red-light runners. A massive ticket might demotivate the lead-foots and stunters.

Heroic career comes to an end

Fire chief Gerry Rempel is stepping down after 44 incredible years serving Castlegar.

That tenure alone is worth much praise, but when you consider the number and kinds of traumas treated in fires, accidents and other incidents, it’s all the more remarkable.

This level of public service can’t be taken for granted. Rempel responded to many incidents involving people he knew. This was the double-edged sword of protecting a smaller community.

He didn’t sleep most nights. He doesn’t look at one “worst incident” but says there are so many “worst” incidents that retiring will never erase those memories.

Despite that horror, he says he will miss the opportunity to help people in need.

We should all stop and give thanks to Mr. Rempel for his service this week.

Arm yourself with knowledge and a pencil

We all love to criticize politicians. Some would suggest it is our secondary national pastime.

Now is your chance to do it in a way that could affect meaningful change.

Advance voting in the provincial election is available throughout the province from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (local time) on April 29 and 30, and May 3, 4, 5 and 6.

Advance voting is open to all eligible voters, and all advance voting locations are wheelchair accessible.

Election day proper is May 9, so if you can’t get out to vote that day, please take advantage of an advance poll to have your voice heard.

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