Quote: Originally Posted by CannuckImpaired Driving - Fact Sheets
At the risk of beating a dead horse, the real question is whether this impairment leads to accidents and/or deaths.
While Ontario has come a long way, impaired driving remains a serious problem:
•Every year, about 17,000 drivers are convicted of Criminal Code of Canada offences (including impaired driving, driving with a blood alcohol concentration of more than 0.08, criminal negligence causing bodily harm or death, manslaughter, dangerous driving and failure to remain at the scene of a collision). It is estimated that approximately three quarters of those convictions are related to drinking and driving.
•Impaired drivers are involved in thousands of traffic collisions every year.
•Drunk driving accounts for almost 25% of all fatalities on Ontario’s roads.
•About 17,000 impaired driving incidents were reported by police in Ontario in 2005. In the same year, 174 people were killed and 3,852 were injured in motor vehicle collisions involving a drinking driver.
Drunk drivers get easy ride in Canada
Robert Solomon, a University of Western Ontario law professor and legal adviser for Mothers Against Drunk Driving Canada, makes a solid case for a major overhaul of Canada's impaired-driving laws. Federal law is now so distorted by technical defences that police officers often will not lay a criminal charge even if there is evidence, Solomon said last week. This amounts, he said, to de-facto decriminalization of the country's impaired-driving laws.
This is the wrong way for Canada to be headed. The toll taken in lives lost and property damaged by impaired driving is huge.
Drunk driving takes more than three times as many lives a year as homicides. In 2003, alcohol and/or drugs were involved in 1,257 fatalities, 74,181 injuries, and 161,299 property-damage-only crashes. The total financial and social costs were estimated to run to $10.95 billion. This is, or should be, a national disgrace.