Montreal police are targeting drivers who park or drive in bus lanes, as well as those who block pedestrian walkways with their cars.

The police force launched ticketing campaigns for both infractions this week, and say they'll be on the lookout until at least the end of the month.

Police say open bus lanes keep traffic flowing, and clear walkways could reduce pedestrian deaths.

A ticket for blocking a bus lane could cost a driver as much as $200, while blocking a pedestrian walkway will result in a $154 ticket.

The police said they have issued 15,000 tickets so far this year to people who drive or park in bus lanes.

Commander Éric Godin, the head of traffic services for Montreal Police, said there's an easy rule to ensure you don't get one.

"Never go in a reserved lane. Never, never, never. The only time you can go is if you have to make a right turn at the end of the reserved lane," said Godin.


Signs painted on the street indicate bus lanes in Montreal. ((CBC))

Debbie Lutz, a Montrealer who drives a car and rides the bus, said she's all for bus lanes.

"I think it's more efficient. Rider capacity is a lot larger in the bus and if you give them priority you're gong to encourage people to take their cars less," said Lutz.

Lutz said she never cuts into bus lanes when she's in her car.

Pedestrian deaths rising

Montreal police said about 20 pedestrians are hit and killed each year in the city, and about half of those deaths occur in the fall.

Police said there have been more deaths so far this year compared to the same date last year.

While police are targeting drivers who block walkways, they're also cracking down on pedestrians who jaywalk.

A jaywalking ticket in Montreal is $37.