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RCMP seeks public’s assistance to catch impaired drivers

Enjoy the Christmas season, but do it safely.

That’s the message the RCMP wants everyone to hear this time of year.

“There are a lot of work parties going on; we want people to make plans for a safe ride home,” said Cpl. Rick Mills of the Happy Valley-Goose Bay RCMP detachment.

“We encourage designated drivers, calling friends to pick you up — just plan ahead.”

The HV-GB RCMP — in conjunction with the local chapter of MADD — held a checkpoint on Dec. 7th, and nabbed three impaired drivers in just a matter of hours. Similar checkpoints were held across the province that same weekend.

At 1:00 a.m., RCMP officers stopped a 17-year old male driving an ATV.  The male was given a two-month driving suspension after the roadside-screening device showed he had alcohol in his blood.

At approximately 3:15 a.m., RCMP officers stopped a 34-year old male on Hamilton River Road during a police checkpoint. The driver was arrested and charged with impaired driving. He was released later the same day with a future court date. The male’s blood alcohol levels were over double the legal limit.

And at approximately 3:20 a.m., RCMP officers stopped a 20-year old male on Hamilton River Road after he tried to avoid a police checkpoint.  The driver was arrested and charged with impaired driving and possession of a controlled substance. He was released later the same day with a future court date. The male’s blood alcohol levels were almost double the legal limit.

“We pulled over 1,000 cars during that checkpoint,” said Mills, adding it was an enforcement and education piece in cooperation with MADD.

“The public was respectful of what we were doing and appreciated the efforts.”

Cpl. Mill said in addition to checkpoints, he also encourages members of the general public to call in with tips about suspected impaired drivers.

“We would like to see the public more involved in this,” he noted. “They can call their local detachment — which will be transferred to St. John’s after business hours — and a member will be contacted and sent to investigate.”

He added the public could really help put a dent in the numbers of impaired drivers on the road.

“People can call anonymously to Crimestoppers, or even to their local detachment; if you are driving behind someone who is all over the road, pull over, and call from your cell to report it. We will investigate.” 

The RCMP would like to remind the public that each year thousands of Canadians are injured or killed by impaired drivers, an entirely preventable cause of death and injuries that devastates families and communities. 

whg-editor@tc.tc

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