THUNDER BAY – Impaired driving puts you, your passengers, pedestrians, and other drivers at risk. Thunder Bay Police say that despite their best efforts to again attempt to educate the public, “It appears that message is not being heard”. For the year of 2017, 175 people were charged with impaired driving offenses in Thunder Bay.
Police say, “Leading into the 2017 Festive Ride, Thunder Bay Police and numerous other partners within the community were busy speaking about the dangers of impaired driving and the various ways of getting home safely.”
Yet there were thirty drivers arrested and charged since the start of this year’s enhanced enforcement. While police are saying that “The success of a program such as Festive Ride is a double edge sword. The Thunder Bay Police Service had it most successful R.I.D.E (Reduce Impaired Driver Everywhere) season in recent history.
This figure is the highest in the past half decade and represents likely only the tip of the drunk driving iceberg. The R.I.D.E. program netted only 19 of the impaired drivers, the other people charged were discovered during routine patrols. The overall statistics show an increase of up to 15% in impaired drivers charged.
“That is a great accomplishment and speaks well of the officers involved and their diligence towards reducing the number of impaired drivers on the roads of Thunder Bay.”
The Ride program caused the arrest of 19 of those drivers. A further 14 drivers were issued three-day-suspensions for providing a warning on the roadside device, and another eighteen drivers were found to be driving with suspended licenses.
R.I.D.E officers also found and issued 24 hours suspensions to numerous novice and young drivers.
The focus of the Festive R.I.D.E may have come to its conclusion but the focus on Impaired Driving by the Thunder Bay Police will continue.
During the holiday season, Operation Red Nose served to provide safe ways home for many drivers. The figures however likely show that despite increased efforts and increased education there are still far too many people choosing to get behind the wheel after drinking.