The ICBC is reminding drivers about the risks of poor driving this summer as they launch counterattacks.
Will you be jumping in the car and heading out of town or to a friend’s house for the long weekend of Canada Day? ICBC is reminding drivers to plan ahead as it begins its summer road checks.
In a statement, the ICBC said police across the province will expedite alcohol and drug enforcement, searching for impaired drivers using its counterattack road checks.
According to the insurance body, an average of 65 people die each year in accidents involving impaired driving, 40 percent of which occur during the summer months alone.
“Accidents involving impaired driving are preventable. No matter where you are this summer: If you plan to drink, don’t drive – arrange for a designated driver, call a taxi or rideshare Take, or take transit,” the ICBC said in its statement.
In the Lower Mainland, an average of 690 people are injured in 1,200 impaired driving-related accidents each year.
Chief Superintendent Holly Turton, the officer in charge of the BC Highway Patrol, said police across BC fully support ICBC’s summer counter attack campaign, and police will enforce measures to prevent bad driving.
“We will use mandatory alcohol screening, standardized field sobriety testing and drug recognition experts to identify and remove alcohol and drug-affected drivers from our roads,” she said. “Police in BC work closely with our road safety partners to make our highways safer.”
Provincial Public Safety Minister Mike Farnsworth said most people understand that it is dangerous to drive under the influence of alcohol or use drugs, but there are still people willing to risk their lives and those of others.
“This impaired driving campaign is an important tool to help educate and protect British Columbians,” he said.
BC’s driving in Canada has the toughest consequences. If caught while driving while impaired, a driving suspension could range from 24 hours to 90 days, your vehicle could be confiscated, and fines, jail time, and compulsory rehabilitation could be enforced.
Charlie Carey is an indigenous and civil affairs reporter for North Shore News. This reporting is made possible by the Beat Local Journalism Initiative.