The County of Stettler Protective Services consists of two members, John Bishop and Terry Best. Both of these members are Community Peace Officers ( Level 1 and Level 2 ) and they are governed by the Alberta Solicitor General Public Security Division.
What do we do?
Much of the public see us every day wearing a uniform, driving around in a marked patrol vehicle without having any idea of what we really do on a daily basis other than “ just drive around”. We have 2 marked patrol units as well as one ATV quad which is also equipped with a light bar and Peace Officer Markings. We are primarily responsible for ensuring that our roads and infrastructure are not damaged by overweight commercial vehicle traffic or other activities that would cause damage however, we have other duties as well. We are responsible for the entire County of Stettler which consists of approx.. 1,647 square miles, 2,777 kms of County road as well as enforcement authorities on Provincial Highways 601, 835, 855, 850 , 851, 853 , 589 and 590. We also have jurisdiction on Highway 12 within the boundaries of Erskine and Nevis.
We hold appointments as Community Peace Officers ( Level 1 and Level 2 ) which gives us authority under the following Provincial Statutes:
Traffic Safety Act and Regulations – these acts cover all moving ( speeding, stop signs etc resulting in demerit points ) and non-moving violations ( equipment/documentation etc )with respect to all drivers and vehicles. This includes all commercial vehicle enforcement with respect to weights, equipment, cargo securement, documentation and the transportation of dangerous goods. All rig moves and other heavy hauls are constantly monitored to ensure that damage is not being caused to our roadways which would result in additional repair costs. Other oilfield traffic and all commercial vehicles, including farm vehicles, are routinely checked to ensure there is compliance with the various laws and regulations. The ATV quad is primarily used in and around the lake area to ensure compliance with the proper use of ATV’s as this is a constant problem.
The Environmental Protection and Enhancement Act – this act deals with sections relating to littering or disposing of litter/waste on private or public lands or highways.
The Fuel Tax Act – enforcement of the regulations relating to the authorized use of marked fuel.
The Gaming and Liquor Act – enforcement of sections relating to consuming/possession of liquor in a vehicle or public place.
In addition to the above Provincial Statutes both members are designated as Dangerous Goods Inspectors under the Transportation and Handling of Dangerous Goods legislation and inspect oilfield related vehicles transporting dangerous products as well as participating in yearly dangerous goods checks with the local Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Branch.
We are also responsible for the enforcement of all County of Stettler Bylaws.
In addition to the above authorities, we can assist other enforcement agencies ( R.C.M.P., Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Branch, Sheriffs ) in any area outside of our normal jurisdiction if participating in a joint forces operation such as a seat belt check or other organized enforcement activity. We are not authorized to investigate Criminal Code matters such as thefts, wilful damages etc.
In addition to our enforcement duties, we are also responsible for Emergency Management. A Stettler Regional Emergency Management Agency was established to cover all of the municipalities within the Town and County of Stettler. John serves as the Director and Terry serves as one of the Deputy Directors with Phil Holton serving as the second. They are responsible for maintaining the regional emergency response plan for all municipalities and are constantly involved in training and participating with industry partners in emergency exercises.
Terry has also assumed additional duties with respect to risk management and insurance duties and investigations with respect to the County of Stettler.
So as you can see, we are involved in many duties and are kept busy other than just “driving around waving at farmers”. We work 7 days a week and are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.