OPP to ramp up Festive R.I.D.E.
With Ontarians starting to head out for social outings in celebration of the upcoming holiday season, the OPP is pulling out all stops to take impaired drivers off roads between now and the new year.
The OPP is conducting its annual Festive R.I.D.E. (Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere) campaign from Nov. 24-Jan. 2 and motorists are reminded that R.I.D.E. stops will be highly visible throughout the campaign.
This number is up by more than 17 percent when compared to the 52 people who lost their lives in impaired-driving collisions by this time last year—and the OPP is
aking this increase in fatalities seriously.
“Last year, during our Festive R.I.D.E. campaign, [OPP] officers charged 682 motorists with impaired driving and issued a “warn range” suspension to 583 drivers who registering a blood alcohol concentration [BAC] between .05 and .08,” noted Chief Superintendent Don Bell, Commander, OPP Highway Safety Division.
“The number of charges we laid is more than double when compared to the 308 drivers we charged with impaired driving during the 2010 campaign and, as such, people can expect to see us ramp up our enforcement over the holidays to put a stop to this life-threatening driving behaviour,” Bell added.
“Clearly, our officers are doing their part to remove impaired drivers from our roads during the holidays,” said Deputy Commissioner Larry Beechey, Provincial Commander, Traffic Safety and Operational Support.
“But it takes a collective public effort to ensuring that no driver gets away with driving impaired.
“It’s simple—if you plan on drinking, do not plan to drive,” Beechey stressed.
“Instead, arrange for a designated driver, take a taxi, stay overnight, or take public transit.”
Beechey added the OPP relies on the public to report crime and impaired driving is a crime that should be treated no differently.
“If you suspect that someone is driving or about to drive impaired, call 9-1-1 and report it,” he said.
“In doing so, you are helping us save lives and removing a criminal threat from our roads.”