Powell River RCMP will be on the lookout for impaired drivers during the summer months as part of a provincial CounterAttack program that is being carried out.
“We will be conducting patrols and check stops throughout the area in an effort to remove impaired drivers from the road,” said Powell River RCMP constable Chris Bakker. “We also appreciate the assistance of the public in reporting possible impaired drivers to make the roads of Powell River safer.”
According to a media release from the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, although COVID-19 has changed many things, it has not changed the law, and if drivers plan to drink, they shouldn’t drive.
“Police will be setting up CounterAttack road checks across the province while taking necessary pandemic-related safety precautions to get impaired drivers off our roads,” the media release stated. “With many restaurants and pubs reopening, ICBC, police and the BC government are urging drivers to plan ahead for a safe ride home if your activities involve alcohol.”
The release stated that every year, on average, 68 people are killed as a result of impaired driving, with 40 per cent of those deaths happening in the summer.
The release further stated that during the pandemic, alcohol consumption increased as more people were drinking at home. To encourage physical distancing and outdoor socialization, some municipalities are allowing alcohol consumption in parks and at beaches.
“Whether you’re drinking at home or out with friends, please be responsible and don’t drive,” the release stated. “While much progress has been made, impaired driving remains the leading cause of criminal death in Canada and in the top three contributing factors for fatal crashes in BC.
“If you’re hosting a celebration this summer (remember to keep it within provincial health officer guidelines) and plan to serve alcohol, get an ICBC special event permit kit for free at icbc.com. It’s also available when applying for an event liquor permit at BCLiquorStores.com.”
The kits include items to encourage designated drivers to stay sober and for guests to find a safe ride home.