OPP Festive R.I.D.E. campaign begins

Drivers impaired by alcohol or marijuana will get more attention from police during the Festive R.I.D.E. campaign.

The OPP’s annual Festive R.I.D.E. campaign began over the November 23 weekend, and will continue until January 2, 2020. The R.I.D.E. campaign means Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere. This year police will pay special attention to anyone whose ability to drive is affected by either alcohol or marijuana.

“Whether a driver is impaired by alcohol, drugs, or both, impaired is impaired,” stated OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique. “Our frontline officers have never been more prepared than they are now, to remove these dangerous drivers from our roads.”

New impaired driving laws, which came into effect last year, mean that OPP officers have greater authority and resources to remove drivers who are impaired, or suspected of being impaired, from the road. Police equipped with an approved screening device can demand a breath sample, without the need for “reasonable suspicion” that a driver may have been drinking.

Police also now have screening equipment that can detect the presence of cannabis or cocaine in a person’s saliva. All these screening devices will also assist police with enforcing Ontario’s “zero tolerance” policy for young, novice and commercial vehicle drivers, on impaired driving because of alcohol or drugs.

Motorists and passengers in vehicles are also reminded to pay attention to provincial rules regarding transportation of alcohol or cannabis inside a vehicle.

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