With the holiday season in full swing, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) has kicked off the 2015 Festive R.I.D.E. campaign to reduce impaired driving and road tragedies due to drugs and alcohol.
Through Jan. 2, 2016, traffic stops will be in place around the province to enforce the safety initiative day and night. Festive R.I.D.E. began November 23rd of this year.
From the same time frame last year, alcohol related incidences have risen three percent. Additionally, 35 of 258 fatalities were alcohol related. Six out of 13 people who were killed in an off-road crash were under the influence of alcohol.
Statistics like these reflect an increased need for public safety awareness regarding impaired driving. Police saw drug impaired driving incidences increase and are taking action.
The Ontario Provincial Police now have specialized Drug Recognition officers who can recognize and target drug impaired drivers. Numerous other officers will be out conducting field sobriety tests when drivers appear reasonably impaired by alcohol or drugs.
To date, the OPP has dispensed 6,800 charges for drug or alcohol impaired driving.
Brad Blair, Deputy Commissioner, reminds everyone to plan ahead before they head out to attend a holiday event. He urges the public to have a plan of action to get home and to not drive after drinking or doing drugs. If they do, the Ontario Provincial Police will be watching and issuing tickets.
During the Festive R.I.D.E. campaign in 2014, the OPP issued 593 impaired driving charges, and 485 drivers had licenses suspended after receiving warnings.
This year, officers want Ontario residents to call the OPP if they see someone who is impaired get behind the wheel.
Impaired driving can have devastating effects on peoples lives. If you or a loved one has suffered because of an impaired driver, contact the auto accident lawyers at Greg Monforton & Partners for a free consultation.