Gateway Gazette

August Long Weekend: Impaired operation charges down over 2014

 

Edmonton, Alberta – This past August long weekend saw a drop in the number of charges relating to the operation of a motor vehicle while impaired by alcohol or drug.  The RCMP laid 77 charges pertaining to impaired driving between Friday July 31st and August 3rd.  That was a drop of 51 cases from last year’s 128 charges over the August long weekend; however, ongoing investigations may result in additional charges added to this year’s total.

Roadside sanctions, or suspensions, went up this year to 89 as opposed the 54 suspensions for the same period last year. These sanctions are for drivers found to have a blood alcohol concentration of .05 to .08 and start with a 3 day license suspension and 3 day vehicle seizure for the first offence when there are not any criminal charges involved.

Impaired driving is an entirely preventable cause of death and injuries that has immense costs and devastating effects in our communities.  The RCMP would like to remind the driving public to always plan ahead when you know you will be drinking:

  • Designate a driver who will not drink for the evening
  • Stay overnight if you are at a friend’s or family member’s home
  • Take the bus
  • Call a cab

Warm weather months (May to September) experience the highest number of casualty collisions involving alcohol.  Most casualty collisions involving alcohol occur on the weekends and the most likely time period for these collisions, on any day of the week, is between 11 p.m. and 3 a.m.

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