Impaired Driving Up 50% Since January In The Sault

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The Sault Ste. Marie Police Service would like to remind motorists not to drink and drive. Since January 2015, the Sault Ste. Marie Police Service has observed a 50% increase in the number of individuals being arrested and charged with impaired driving. This past weekend police arrested three individuals with drinking and driving related charges.

“The increase in the number of individuals being charged with drinking and driving charges in our community is alarming. Every time an individual makes a conscious decision to get behind the wheel of a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol they put everyone’s safety at risk. One only has to pick up a newspaper or watch the news to see vivid illustrations of the consequences of drinking and driving” states Chief Robert Keetch.

The Sault Ste. Marie Police Service will continue to be vigilant in attempting to identify, arrest and charge impaired drivers in our community.

The public can also help. If you suspect a driver of a vehicle is impaired call and report it to the police at the time. Provide information such as a licence plate, vehicle description and direction of travel.

MADD Canada estimates that every year in Canada over 1000 lives are lost and more than 63,000 people injured in collisions involving a driver who had been drinking. The Sault Ste. Marie Police Service would like to remind the public that drinking and driving is an expensive gamble. If you are charged and ultimately convicted of an impaired related offence you may incur the following monetary costs:

Upon your arrest the vehicle you are driving, whether it is yours or not, will be impounded for 7 days. There are fees for the return of your vehicle from the compound

Upon registering .08 or higher, your licence is automatically suspended for 90 days

Legal Fees can range from $2000-$10,000

Criminal Code fine upon conviction is $1,000; subsequent convictions carry up to a lifetime ban on driving

Back on Track program $578

License Reinstatement fee $150

Increased Insurance-the estimate is an extra $5000 per year for three years

Ignition Interlock System $1500 (one year minimum)

The total estimated cost is up to $28,000 (note: numbers provided by the MTO)

As the summer months approach we are asking members of the public to plan ahead, prearrange a ride and if you are going to party, please do so responsibly. Don’t drink and drive.

Please consider all other options as there are many. Riding in the back of a police car in handcuffs as a result of impaired driving arrest should not be one of them.