As many as 400 people will be caught drinking and driving in the Southern Interior next month, stats show | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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As many as 400 people will be caught drinking and driving in the Southern Interior next month, stats show

November 30, 2017 - 8:00 PM

With so many safe ride home options available in the Southern Interior, there's no reason to drink and drive this holiday season, but yet every year drivers seem to find a way to hand over their licences.

Numbers from the Public Safety and Solicitor General Ministry show that the holiday months have some of the highest numbers for immediate roadside prohibitions handed out in the Southern Interior.

November and December each typically see between 300 and 400 roadside prohibitions being handed out to Southern Interior Drivers, according to numbers from 2014 to 2016.

Other than the summer months, the rest of the year is slightly lower.

Between November and December last year, a total of 705 driving prohibitions were handed out to drivers in the Southern Interior, down slightly from 707 in 2015 and 762 in 2014. These figures do not include Canadian Criminal Code charges of impaired driving or driving with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher. 

Kamloops RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Jodi Shelkie says if you choose to drink and drive, you're not only risking financial loss or a driving prohibition.

"The consequences of impaired driving are massive," she says. "You’re risking your life and the lives of others. You can be charged criminally and the ripple effect on you, your family and friends can be huge."

Shelkie says there are no excuses to drink and drive, and if you're planning on drinking, leave your vehicle at home.

"If your holiday festivities involve alcohol, plan ahead for a safe ride home: arrange a designated driver, call a taxi, take transit," she says, or in Kamloops you have the added option of using Operation Red Nose, a holiday season volunteer-run operation to take you and your vehicle home. 

The province introduced immediate roadside prohibitions back in 2010. If a driver provides a breath sample reading warn (blood alcohol concentration of .05) or fail (.08) or more, they can be served with a three-day, seven-day or 30-day immediate roadside prohibition, depending on how many they’ve had in the past.

If a driver provides a sample of .08 or more, they could be served with a 90-day prohibition. According to the Ministry's numbers, these are the most common prohibitions to be handed out.

There are also administrative driving prohibitions which are handled through the criminal process. A driver who blows over .08 could face criminal charges.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ashley Legassic or call 250-319-7494 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © iNFOnews, 2017

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