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Immediate penalties for drunk driving may prevent car accidents

For many people across the province, holidays involve parties, presents, eating and drinking. British Columbia drivers must also remain aware of the dangers of consuming alcohol and driving as they make plans to attend these gatherings. The RCMP's Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) program is designed to encourage safe behaviour and reduce car accidents from impaired driving. The program will be set up across the province to catch people who are driving under the influence.

British Columbia has designed laws that provide for the ability to penalize drinking and driving offenders quickly and effectively. Previously, those who drove under the influence could not be punished until the matter was settled in criminal court. However, the new IRP program authorizes police to immediately take a driver off the road if they either blow over the limit or refuse to provide a breath sample. The officer can also issue a pre-determined punishment on the scene based on the blood alcohol content.

The IRP program is a way for the province to work with police to prevent car accidents. It also helps to regulate backlog in the court system. Drivers should be aware that the consequences for drinking and driving this year may be even more serious and certainly more immediate than they have been in years prior.

The most serious consequence of impaired driving has remained the same over the years. Injury and death from car accidents devastate many British Columbia families during the holiday season and throughout the year. Those dealing with an injury or a wrongful death situation due to a car accident will want to contact a lawyer at the first opportunity to discuss their options for legal recourse.

Source: vernonmorningstar.com, "Don't drink and drive", Nov. 24, 2017

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