Canadian Underwriter

Saskatchewan police report more than 320 impaired driving offences in May traffic safety spotlight

June 22, 2017   by Canadian Underwriter

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During the same month it released its awareness campaign on impaired driving, Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) has reported 324 impaired-driving related offences during May’s traffic safety spotlight – “another reminder of why such campaigns are needed.”

Last month, police reported 324 impaired driving offences, SGI said in a statement on Tuesday. Of those offences, 280 were Criminal Code of Canada charges, such as a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) exceeding .08, impaired driving or refusing a breath test, while 44 were roadside suspensions (including new drivers with a BAC ranging from .00 to .08 and experienced drivers with a BAC ranging from .04 to .08).

Another notable result coming out of the May traffic safety spotlight was a “significant uptick” in speeding and aggressive driving offences reported by police – 6,159. That was the highest number of speeding tickets reported via a traffic safety spotlight since October 2015, SGI noted in the statement.

The other notable result from last month’s spotlight was 364 distracted driving offences (251 for cellphone use) and 469 seatbelt, car seat or booster seat violations throughout the month. These results include all traffic safety focus results for May submitted by police as of June 16, the statement pointed out.

Impaired driving remains the leading cause of traffic fatalities on Saskatchewan roads, SGI reported. “It’s 100 per cent preventable and – with the tougher new legislation introduced in Saskatchewan at the beginning of the year – 100 per cent not worth the risk,” the statement said.

That new legislation includes a three-day vehicle seizure for experienced drivers with a BAC over .04, zero tolerance for drugs and alcohol for drivers 21 and under and the “strongest ignition interlock laws in all of Canada.”

This month, police in Saskatchewan continue to focus on new driver safety. Results from June’s traffic safety spotlight will be available in the third week of July.