THUNDER BAY – Thunder Bay Police report we are only one weekend into this year’s Festive RIDE season and so far it’s been a season of disappointment.
The official start date to this year’s Festive RIDE was Friday, December 2nd. Between that date and Sunday, December 4th, six individuals were charged for impaired driving. The arrests came as a result of both direct Festive RIDE activities and general traffic enforcement by the TBPS’s Primary Response Units.
One of the more serious incidents occurred just before 2:10 a.m. on Sunday, December 4th. At that time an officer conducting impaired driving enforcement observed an SUV stopped at a traffic light on Central Avenue at Carrick Street.
The motorist was then observed turning onto Carrick Street and accelerating at a high rate of speed. The officer was able to confirm the motorist was travelling 91 km/ h on a roadway featuring a posted maximum speed limit of 50 km/h.
The motorist was then observed travelling westbound on the Harbour Expressway and reaching a speed of 134 km/h on a roadway featuring a posted maximum speed limit of 70 km/h.
A traffic stop was initiated and the vehicle came to a stop at the intersection of Golf Links Road and the Harbour Expressway.
When the officer approached the driver, they observed multiple signs of impairment.
The 23-year-old male driver was arrested for impaired operation of a motor vehicle and transported to the TBPS headquarters at 1200 Balmoral Street.
He now faces charges of impaired operation of a motor vehicle, stunt driving, and dangerous operation of a motor vehicle.
Another incident occurred just after 1 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 3 while officers were conducting traffic enforcement along James Street South.
At this time officers observed a damaged pickup truck with only one headlight.
Officers stopped the vehicle to inform the driver about the headlight. The motorist told officers he was aware and that he had collided with a snowbank earlier in the evening.
Police observed several signs the male was impaired by drug. He was transported to the TBPS headquarters for further evaluation by a Drug Recognition Expert and now faces charges related to impaired operation of a motor vehicle.
The Festive RIDE initiative continues through the holiday season. Meanwhile, police will continue to conduct regular traffic enforcement outside of the RIDE program.
We would like to take this moment to thank the public who have chosen to do the right thing and drive sober and undistracted. We urge everyone to plan ahead when alcohol and drugs might be part of your recreation. Public transit, cabs, ride shares, and the designated driver program are all ways to prevent incidents of impaired driving.
The TBPS would like to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday season