Impaired is Impaired says Alberta RCMP Traffic Services

Edmonton, Alta. – Alberta RCMP would like to remind all drivers in the province that impaired driving, whether by alcohol or drug, may cost you your life or the lives of others. In support of National Impaired Driving Prevention Week, which takes place March 18th to 24th, police will be conducting CheckStops throughout the week all across the province.

“There is a myth that it is okay to use drugs and drive because it affects you differently,” says Supt. Gary Graham, Officer in Charge, Alberta Integrated Traffic Services. “It is important to remind everyone that impaired driving, whether by drugs or alcohol, is a serious offence that will lead to criminal charges.”

“Impaired driving is a leading cause of death and injury on Alberta roads,” says Rick Gardner, Superintendent, Alberta Sheriffs Traffic Operations. “We all have a part to play in keeping impaired drivers off our roads. It’s not about getting caught at a CheckStop, it’s about the possibility of hurting yourself and others on the way home.”

This week, the RCMP, in partnership with Alberta Traffic Sherrifs will maintain an increased presence on Alberta roads. Police officers trained to conduct Standardized Field Sobriety Tests (SFST) and as Drug Recognition Experts (DRE) will be at CheckStops to raise awareness and to take drivers, impaired by drugs or alcohol, off the road. Drivers suspected of being impaired will be subject to road-side sobriety tests that may result in immediate licence suspensions and/or criminal charges.

Quick Facts:

  • Alcohol has a “multiplicative” effect on other drugs. That means having a drink after taking cannabis products results in far greater impairments than taking either alone.
  • Drug Recognition Experts can determine that you’re under the influence of a drug and you can be charged with drug-impaired driving.
  • In 2016, the presence of alcohol or drugs was a factor in 27.9% of fatal collisions that occurred in Alberta RCMP jurisdiction.
  • In 2017, Alberta RCMP issued 4,290 impaired driving violations and 1,758 roadside suspensions.
  • In the first two months of 2018, Alberta RCMP issued 538 impaired driving violations.

Integrated Traffic Units consists of RCMP and Alberta Traffic Sheriffs working together in a collaborative effort to deliver effective and efficient traffic safety services to Albertans, with a focus on identified enforcement priorities.