“My son will never know his grandfather,” Allison Tatham said Friday, speaking at the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Edmonton launch of the Project Red Ribbon campaign.

Tatham’s father had left his Regina home one morning in June 2014 on what should have been a quick trip to buy a coffee and wash his car.

“My dad was not going to be coming home,” said Tatham. “A man travelling nearly 100 km/h on a city street at 3-1/2 times the legal limit rear-ended my dad’s car … embedding his truck up to the front seats of the car and breaking my dad’s neck. He was killed instantly.”


Allison Tatham, a MADD Edmonton volunteer, hugs MADD Edmonton chapter vice-president Amanda Sawatzky after speaking about the loss of her father to impaired driving as MADD Edmonton’s Red Ribbon Campaign launches at Edmonton Police Service Headquarters on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017.

An off-duty police officer who witnessed the crash watched as beer cans fell from the drivers’ side door of the truck.

The intoxicated driver “didn’t even know what city he was in,” said Tatham.

Tatham, as both a “survivor” of an impaired driving crime and as a paramedic for 10 years, is frustrated others continue to suffer the devastating effects of a totally preventable crime.

At the 30th annual MADD Canada Project Red Ribbon campaign launch at Edmonton police headquarters Friday, police Chief Rod Knecht shared her frustration. “Here we are again. Another year, still dealing with an issue that continues to foist death, injury and misery on our community,” said Knecht.

Edmonton police have made 1,038 impaired driving arrests and laid 1,902 impaired driving charges to date this year.

“That’s more than three people a day being arrested for this crime in Edmonton alone,” Knecht said.

Mayor Don Iveson said Edmonton is ranked seventh in Canada for the number of police-reported impaired driving incidents. He proclaimed November and December Project Red Ribbon months in Edmonton.

RCMP Insp. Steve Daley, operations officer for integrated traffic services, said 15 per cent of all fatal and serious injury collisions in Alberta RCMP jurisdictions between 2009 and 2014 involved alcohol or drugs.

Between November and January, MADD Canada Chapters will be distributing millions of ribbons for Canadians to wear and display as a symbol of their support for eliminating impaired driving.

Source: Edmonton Journal


Last updated on: 2017-11-23 | Link to this post