OPP charge 587 drivers during annual festive ride program

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ONTARIO-The Ontario Provincial Police say they have charged 587 drivers with impaired driving during the annual Festive Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere (RIDE) campaign between November 24, 2017 – January 2, 2018.

An additional 366 drivers were issued a Warn Range Suspension and had their driver’s licence suspended for having a blood alcohol concentration between .05 and .08 according to police.

The numbers are down from last year. By comparison, the OPP charged 623 impaired drivers and issued 407 Warn Range Suspensions during the 2016-2017 Festive RIDE campaign.

44 lives were lost in alcohol/drug-related collisions on OPP-patrolled roads in 2017. Officers conducted more than 9,830 RIDE events throughout the province, surpassing the 7,343 RIDE events conducted over the previous season’s campaign.

Over the holidays, OPP Drug Recognition Evaluators (DRE) assisted with t he tools and expertise to test for and detect drug impairment in drivers. Of the 587 drivers charged, 29 were charged with drug impairment.  In 2017, the OPP charged 4,915 drivers with alcohol-impaired charges and 238 drivers with drug-impaired charges and issued 2,995 Warn Range Suspensions.

The OPP is again reminding the public to call 9-1-1 if you suspect that someone is driving while impaired by alcohol or drugs. In doing so, you could be saving lives.