MADD Canada is bringing its Call 911 message to the waterways, supported by the Province of British Columbia, to highlight the dangers of impaired boating and encourage the boating community to help prevent it.

"By working together with MADD Canada and the RCMP, we hope all British Columbians take a moment to think about the things they can do to keep themselves safe on land and water," said Environment Minister Mary Polak. "We strive to provide a safe environment for our park visitors. Now 42 of BC Parks' most popular boat launches have new signs installed encouraging the public to report impaired boaters."

Boating tragedies occur every year because operators are impaired. MADD Canada reminds the public that impaired boating is not only dangerous, it's a crime that should be reported to police for the protection and safety of everyone who uses our waterways.

With alcohol being a factor in more than 40 per cent of recreational boating fatalities, there is a great need to educate boaters about the dangers of operating their vessels while impaired. Thirty-seven per cent of boaters in Canada admit to consuming alcohol every time they boat, and nearly two-thirds admit to consuming alcohol sometimes when boating.

"Alcohol consumption affects judgement, reduces motor skills and balance and slows reaction times, and the effects of sun and waves can heighten those effects," says Tracy Crawford, MADD Canada Chapter Services Manager. "That is why it is so important that operators and passengers boat sober."

British Columbia's Conservation Officer Service works to ensure public safety relating to recreational activities. Conservation officers work in conjunction with Transport Canada and the RCMP to prevent on-water injuries and deaths. Boating signs have been made possible by the generous support of Transport Canada.

The effort to bring the Call 911 message to waterways is based on MADD Canada's successful Campaign 911 program for roads and highways. Using signs, billboards, public service announcements, postcards, bookmarks and other materials, Campaign 911 educates and empowers the public to call 911 to report suspected impaired drivers.

Source: Digital Journal


Last updated on: 2013-07-16 | Link to this post