The Halton Regional Police Service (HRPS) has released its impaired driving statistics for 2016, including its annual December RIDE campaign and overall year-over-year totals.
Results from RIDE, a program held from December 1-31 in partnership with community agencies such as MADD Canada and funded in part by the Ministry of Community Safety, are as follows:
• 266 roadside tests conducted
• 51 impaired driving arrests (this compares to 31 arrests during the same period in 2015)
• 47 three-day suspensions issued
• 2 seven-day suspensions issued
• 5 24-hour suspensions issued (G1/G2 drivers)
Overall impaired driving arrests in Halton Region, however, decreased from 425 in 2015 to 404 in 2016.
“Impaired driving by drug or alcohol is a threat to community safety, and the reality is it isn’t a holiday, weekend or night-time problem,” said Nishan Duraiappah, Deputy Chief of Police. “As such, it is and will remain a top priority for our Service all day, every day of the year. Enforcement alone isn’t the answer, and we will continue to partner with other organizations to weave elements of prevention and social development into our work towards enhancing traffic safety in our community.”
In addition to enforcement programs like RIDE, officers conducted preventative projects at licensed establishments throughout Halton to educate patrons on impairment. Volunteers had the opportunity to check their blood alcohol levels on-the-spot by providing breath samples into roadside screening devices. Fifty-two (52) men and women participated. Of these, 29 registered a pass (under 0.05 mg alcohol/100 ml blood), 15 a warning (between 0.05 and 0.08 mg alcohol/100 ml blood), and eight failed (over 0.08 mg alcohol/100 ml blood).
To ensure that the impaired driving message was heard by all drivers of all ages, High School Liaison Officers attended several Halton high schools to deliver its annual RIDE 101 education program. RIDE 101 teaches students about the influence drugs and alcohol can have on a driver’s perception and ability to complete simple tasks by enabling them to experience the world through the lens of goggles that mimic its effects.
These measures and others are part of the Service’s broader Community First policing philosophy that focuses on incorporating the four pillars of (community) safety and well-being into service priorities: Emergency Response, Risk Intervention, Prevention, and Social Development. More information can be found at www.haltonpolice.ca under Community or by following @HaltonPolice on Twitter or Facebook.
In the meantime, residents are reminded that impaired driving is a crime in progress and to report it immediately by calling 9-1-1.