Expect to see more of a police presence on highways beginning Saturday, when the RCMP officially launch CounterAttack.
West Kootenay Traffic Services, along with local detachments and municipal police officers, will be doing road checks on Dec. 1 to mark the province-wide “National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day.”
“December 1 (is) kicking off the month-long campaign,” advised RCMP Sgt. Chad Badry, from West Kootenay Traffic Services.
“Motorists should expect to see police road checks in numerous locations throughout the Kootenay Boundary region.”
Stepping up enforcement efforts to stop impaired drivers is a BC RCMP Traffic Services priority this holiday season, says Cpl. Mike Halskov, media relations officer for E Division Traffic Services.
During the one-day blitz, motorists from all regions of B.C. can expect to see heightened police patrols in areas being targeted for impaired drivers.
But it won’t stop there.
“Traffic Services Units and detachments throughout the province will be implementing their respective enforcement plans on various dates throughout the month,” Halskov said.
On average, 65 people in British Columbia die each year in collisions where alcohol, drugs or medication is involved. According to ICBC statistics, 22 of those fatalities occurred in the Southern Interior.
“Making impaired driving fatalities one of the leading causes of death on our provincial roadways,” noted Halskov. “Impaired driving, defined as driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs, is entirely preventable yet it continues to happen with devastating consequences. Police will be using every resource at their disposal to get impaired drivers off the road including the use of Standardized Field Sobriety Testing and specially trained Drug Recognition Experts.”
As far as marijuana impairment, Halskov says police are fully prepared to enforce the recently introduced cannabis legislation.
“A small decision can have great consequences,” says Superintendent Davis Wendell, Officer in Charge of BC RCMP Traffic Services. “If you are planning on drinking or using drugs this holiday season, please do not drive. By finding an alternative way home such as public transit, taxi or a designated driver you can ensure that you, and others sharing the road with you, get to their destination safely. Please make it your habit to drive sober every time you get behind the wheel.”