Fewer cops to be seen around construction

La Presse says here that the SPVM plans to deploy fewer cops around construction sites during the rentrée and I can confirm it’s already true. Thursday afternoon at Jarry and St-Denis the traffic lights were on the blink, literally, flashing red both ways. St-Denis is being excavated all along there, but around 5 p.m. not a single worker or cop was on site, and the traffic was insane. Drivers were honking and nearly colliding, pedestrians were clustering in little groups before venturing across, cyclists were taking a deep breath and plunging in front of irritated SUV drivers.

So I called 911 and described the scene and they said OK. I stood watching while traffic clashed for fifteen minutes, then I went to call 911 again, but stopped when I saw a cop cruiser – which squeezed through the intersection and moved away at speed. Oh I see. A second cop car did the same a few minutes later. Definite whiff of “not my call, not my job” about that.

It took over half an hour before cops arrived to direct traffic and reset the blinkenlights. Luckily nobody got clipped.

Reducing cops around construction? Even cadets? Save a buck, kill a pedestrian? Not a great plan.