Police cracking down on impaired driving this holiday season on Vancouver Island
Police across the country will be ramping up impaired driving enforcement ahead of the holiday season, and Vancouver Island is no exception.
RCMP are kicking off their "Winter CounterAttack" campaign, which means more police checks will be set up to monitor for impaired driving.
Saturday, Dec. 4, also marks "National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day" in Canada.
"For 24 hours, police officers from as far away as Bonavista, Newfoundland, to Ahousaht, on British Columbia’s rugged West Coast, are gearing up with a singular task – to stop anyone who chooses to drive while impaired by drugs and/or alcohol," said Nanaimo RCMP in a statement Friday.
BC Highway Patrol officers will also be setting up road checks across B.C., including on Vancouver Island, ranging from the North Island to Greater Victoria.
According to ICBC, an average of 65 people die in impaired driving-related car crashes in B.C. each year.
On Vancouver Island, 11 people are killed and 320 people are injured in roughly 600 impaired driving-related crashes annually.
"We want everyone to have a great evening but more importantly, we want everyone to arrive home safely," said Const. Gary O’Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP.
"Don’t allow yourself to become a statistic. Make good choices," he said.
Nanaimo RCMP say they've also partnered with McDonalds restaurants this year to support sober and designated drivers.
Mounties will be handing out some free McDonald's coffee coupons to drivers at road checks on Saturday.
Instead of driving impaired, Mounties suggest arranging a ride in advance, taking a taxi, car pooling, or walking.