OPP charge 28 impaired drivers in Festive RIDE Campaign

WELLINGTON COUNTY – Wellington County OPP officials say local police continually strive to make the roads safe for everyone.

“This holiday season, with the help and support of the public, we’ve made a positive impact,” OPP officials state in a Jan. 2 press release announcing the results of the local Festive RIDE Campaign.

During the campaign there were 193 reported collisions; eight involved drug or alcohol usage, 167 property-damage-only collisions, 25 personal-injury collisions, and one fatal collision.

OPP conducted 110 separate RIDE checks throughout Wellington County, and more than 6,000 drivers were engaged. As a result, 28 drivers were charged with impaired driving offences (including refusal to provide a sample) and 43 more received warning range suspensions (50-80mg/100mL blood).

Last year, the Festive RIDE Campaign results included: over 100 RIDE checks, 27 impaired/breath sample refusal charges and 34 warning range suspensions.

While conducting this year’s RIDE programs officers also investigated traffic and cannabis offences. This resulted in four drivers being charged with driving while suspended, 20 cannabis charges, three probation breach charges and nine drug charges.

“Choosing to drive while impaired is choosing to put lives at risk and that is unacceptable,” said Wellington County OPP Inspector Scott Lawson.

“Our motivation has been, and will continue to be, to improve the safety and security of everyone in Wellington County. This is a big part of why Wellington County OPP is able to take pride in being a provincial leader in road safety through enforcement – a role we’re planning on maintaining into the future.”

Across the province the OPP conducted a total of 10,270 RIDE events, laying 539 impaired charges (135 in the OPP’s West Region) and issuing 384 warning range suspensions (110 in the West Region).

During last year’s Festive RIDE Campaign (2017-18), the OPP  conducted 9,830 RIDE stops across Ontario, laid 587 impaired charges and issued 366 warning range suspensions.

The Wellington County OPP press release states police are  thanking “all who helped keep our roads a little safer this holiday season by choosing not to drive impaired and calling 911 if they suspected someone else was putting lives at risk and driving while impaired.”

Police are also reminding drivers new legislation “has clarified rules and stiffened penalties for the serious driving offences of impaired and distracted driving.”