THUNDER BAY – It is hard to reason why some drivers get behind the wheel of their vehicle and drive while impaired. It can’t be a lack of public education, nor can it be that the penalties are not a real deterrence. Sadly, however, in Thunder Bay, impaired driving seems to be seen by some as a right, or at the least as a thing to do.
With the legalization of cannabis, both the police and the public face increased numbers of people behind the wheel who are impaired.
Editorial comment: As a year-round cyclist, it is shocking to me how many times a vehicle will drive by leaving the strong stink of cannabis – Drivers actually smoking drugs while driving.
On Friday, February 7, 2020, Thunder Bay Police Service, with the assistance of members of the public, arrested a tow truck driver for impaired driving Friday evening.
Police report that “Just before 6 pm on Friday, February 7, 2020, a 911 call was received regarding a possible impaired driver operating a tow truck on the Harbour Expressway”.
Police say that it was, “Especially alarming was that a pickup truck was strapped onto the flatbed, recently loaded at the scene of a separate motor vehicle collision. The tow truck was described as weaving across lanes of travel and striking a snow-bank.”
Officers entered the area to find that the tow truck had left prior to their arrival. More 911 calls began to pour in, giving officers a path of travel for this tow truck. The vehicle was still observed weaving into the opposite lanes of travel as well as running a red light. The tow truck was last seen turning onto Rosslyn Road.
Police turned onto Rosslyn Road moments later, finding that the truck driver had reversed into a ditch and become lodged. In speaking with the driver, the police became suspicious that he was under the influence of some type of substance.
A Standardized Field Sobriety Test was administered and the driver was deemed to have performed poorly. The driver was arrested, transported to the Thunder Bay Police Station, and turned over to a Drug Recognition Evaluator for further testing.
The individual was determined to be impaired by a drug, and subsequently criminally charged with Impaired Operation of a Conveyance, as well as Driving While Under Suspension. The tow truck was impounded for 7 days and the driver’s licence was further suspended for 90 days.
The Thunder Bay Police Service would like to thank those members of the public that quickly called to report this dangerous driver. With their assistance, a potentially devastating situation was averted.
If you suspect someone to be driving while impaired, either by alcohol or drug, please call 911 immediately.