A motorist found themselves in hot water last Thursday, after driving away from a high visibility traffic enforcement project, or checkstop, set up by the Weyburn Police Service. 

"As we were directing traffic into the area where we were doing the traffic project, an individual failed to follow the direction of the officer and actually turned the vehicle away from the officer, and drove off to the next traffic light," explained Constable Preston Roy. The officer pursued the car on foot and caught up to them at the traffic light. According to the WPS, the person behind the wheel was reluctant to speak to the officer, but the police were eventually able to talk to him. 

A quick investigation determined the driver was impaired, according to Roy, and the motorist was charged accordingly. 

When a high visibility traffic enforcement project is set up by law enforcement, they ensure it is as visible as possible, Roy said. 

"Typically, we'll set up in an area like the mall, where it's an open parking lot, and we'll have our vehicle's emergency lights on so it's very recognizable," the constable stated. As well, to help ensure there is no confusion, officers will be positioned to direct the traffic into the area of the enforcement project.

So what happens if you see a checkstop ahead of you, and try your best to avoid it, or turn away after being directed in by the officers?

"There is a ticket for failing to follow the peace officer's instructions," Roy answered when asked that question. "We typically have chase vehicles. We call them so that if someone does try to avoid our checkstops, then the police vehicle can perform a traffic stop and figure out why that individual is trying to avoid the check."

The WPS had 78 calls for service last week. Those calls resulted in five charges under the Criminal Code, 15 under the Traffic Safety Act, and one under the province's Vehicle Equipment Regulations.