"Planning Ahead" for Sober Drivers has Twists in Road

TORONTO, Dec. 20, 2013 /CNW/ - arrive alive DRIVE SOBER is reminding revelers that planning ahead is crucial; and that a lot has changed over the years with legislation and prevention strategies. Here are some insights for this holiday season:

arrive alive DRIVE SOBER® is NOT a designated driver service; we are a registered charity existing to raise awareness to save lives and prevent injuries; we have not given permission to any services to use our name. If you choose to use a designated driver service we recommend that you investigate your options BEFORE imbibing. Here are some questions to ask:

  • does your vehicle insurance cover other drivers?
  • If the designated driver service carries their own insurance, how much is it?, what is covered?
  • who is responsible if your car runs a red light, or incurs costs via parking tickets, dings, other damage?
  • what training do their drivers have and are they reputable/bonded?

arrive alive DRIVE SOBER® does not endorse any specific designated driver services. Revelers can use TAXIGUY; calling 1-888-TAXIGUY will connect you to the first available (and licensed and insured) local cab company; the call is free and they have a free app. Some areas have Operation Red Nose: http://operationnezrouge.com/en/

These come in a wide range of qualities and employ various technologies; they can be bought in dollar stores, or on-line; they can come in the form of an app, attach to your smart phone, or be even more involved. Some thoughts to keep in mind:

  • the only breath test that counts is the one done by the police officer at the roadside/RIDE /police station
  • your BAC is a moving target so you could be "under .05" at 10:30 - but you might be over an hour later
  • the devices need to be calibrated, maintained and properly used to be accurate
  • most of these units do not physically prevent you from starting your car (unlike an interlock device); and lastly
  • if you are going to play scientist with calculating your BAC: aim for zero.

Come New Year's Day some revelers may still be legally impaired. It can take 12 hours or more from the time of your last drink for your BAC to reach zero. On January 1st many of us won't have a zero BAC until the afternoon. *Drivers are removed from the road at .05 (.04 in Saskatchewan) in every province (except Quebec) and the incident is recorded on your licence; and zero is the limit for novice/young drivers in most jurisdictions.

Criminal charges of over .08 or "refuse to provide a breath sample" carry significant sanctions and can cost drivers more than $22,500 for fines, increases to insurance, ignition interlock, and Back on Track; and convicted impaired drivers are subject to licence suspension and a criminal record. Immediate sanctions (when charged) include a 90-day licence suspension and 7 day vehicle impoundment.

arrive alive DRIVE SOBER has shared this message via television/radio Public Service Announcements, posters, bus-back ads. More info available at www.arrivealive.org or www.chooseyourride.ca

We gratefully acknowledge: The Beer Store, Ministry of Transportation, SmartServe Ontario, CAASCO RIDECHECKS, and TrojanOne.

SOURCE: arrive alive DRIVE SOBER

For further information:

Contact: Anne Leonard 416-485-4411 (expect voicemail over holidays) or @drivesober ("24/7")


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