Drinking and driving

Prepare for your night out - plan ahead for how you will get home.

If you were not aware, the laws against drinking and driving or driving while impaired in the Province of Ontario are reasonably strict and for the most part, vigorously enforced.

As of May 1, 2009, Ontario took measures to help take more drinking drivers off the roads. Drivers who register a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) from 0.05 to 0.08 (known as the “warn range”) immediately lose their licence at roadside for three, seven or 30 days.

Consequences also get tougher for repeat occurrences. All that is assuming there has been no accident involving other vehicles, personnel or property. Factor any or all of those into the equation and the crime’s punishment increases exponentially.

Effective December 1, 2010, drivers with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08, or higher and who fail to comply with breath testing, face an immediate seven-day vehicle impoundment at roadside.

Also effective December 1, 2010, a seven-day vehicle impoundment applies to drivers who get behind the wheel of a vehicle without an ignition interlock device in violation of such a condition on their licence. There is no ability for the vehicle owner to appeal these seven-day impoundments. If you fail or refuse to comply with alcohol or drug testing, you can be convicted under the Criminal Code. Individuals convicted for impaired driving offences face penalties under Canada's Criminal Code and Ontario's Highway Traffic Act.

Just because you do not “feel” impaired means nothing – except you are exercising poor judgement. Upon conviction, consequences include an additional licence suspension period, alcohol education and treatment programs, Ignition Interlock installation (an electronic in-vehicle breathalyzer) and severe fines.

Driving-related Criminal Code convictions remain on a driver's record for at least 10 years. This may mean additional financial penalties in the form of exorbitant insurance premiums – assuming you still have your driver’s licence.

Simply, you don't have to be over the Criminal Code blood alcohol limit of 0.08 to face serious consequences.

Remember, there is no such thing as being a little bit impaired. Impaired is impaired. Plan ahead for your night out - take a taxi, public transportation, establish the designated driver, stay over, or book a hotel room.

The consequences could change your life forever.

For more information visit the Ministry of Transportation's website.

Source: Our Windsor


Last updated on: 2014-12-22 | Link to this post