Impaired Driving

Information relating to impaired driving.

The Responsible Driver Program

No AlcoholBC's Responsible Driver Program is required for drivers who have received an Immediate Roadside Prohibition for blowing a fail, having been convicted of an alcohol related driving offence or who have multiple alcohol related driving events on their driving record. The program may also be required because the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles has evidence that the driver has an alcohol abuse or misuse problem.

Review of Immediate Roadside Prohibitions

Scales of JusticeThe most significant concern apparent to me with regard to the new Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) program in BC is that the police are seen to be the judge and jury at roadside. This has been the case since the creation of the roadside prohibition many years ago, the only thing that has changed is the size of the penalty. Few people seem to be aware that this action is subject to review both by the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles and the courts.

CASE LAW - Rossi v Superintendent of Motor Vehicles

BC Courts Coat of ArmsMr. Rossi was investigated for driving while impaired by alcohol. He provided a breath sample that registered a fail reading on an Approved Screening Device. Subsequent to that he supplied two samples of breath analyzed at 80 mg% on a BAC Datamaster C instrument. As a result of this, the investigator served Mr. Rossi with an Administrative Driving Prohibition for 90 days.

READING - Drink Driving Monitor 11

ETSC LogoBritish Columbia is not the only jurisdiction trying to reduce the incidence of impaired driving by implementing tougher legislation. The European Transport Safety Council Newsletter on Drink Driving Policy Developments in the European Union shows that some countries are implementing blood alcohol limits even lower than those in place here in BC.

Q&A - Are We Too Regulated?

Q&A ImageJust wondering if you read the article in the province where Tom Stamatakis, president of the BC police union gave his thoughts on the new impaired driving laws? Food for thought don't you think? I'm beginning to think we are becoming too regulated.

You Blew a Fail, What Now?

RSDAfter all the publicity concerning BC having the toughest impaired driving penalties in Canada you decide to drink and drive. You are stopped by police, blow a fail reading (BAC > 100 mg% or .10) on the screening device and are now in serious trouble for the first time in your driving career. What happens under the Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) Program?

Q&A - Hung by the Second Test

Q&A ImageUnder the new Immediate Roadside Prohibition rules, motorists are able to take a second test on a different device, says RCMP Constable Steve Holmes.

"Holmes says the driver, who had a strong odour of liquor on his breath, proceeded to blow a fail on his second try.

Driving with a BAC Between 50 and 80 mg%

ASDIn 1977 BC established the limit of 50 mg% as the provincial limit on Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) for drivers. When tested with an approved screening device drivers with a BAC over this limit received a 24 hour roadside prohibition. Relatively recently, this prohibition also included a 24 hour vehicle impoundment to go along with the prohibition.

CASE LAW - R v Berner

BC Courts Coat of ArmsThis is the provincial court decision rendered by Judge P.D. Gulbranson finding Carol Ann Berner guilty of all charges arising out of the death of Alexa Middelaer and the serious injuries caused to her aunt, Daphne Middelaer.

Care & Control of a Motor Vehicle While Impaired

CounterAttack LogoIt's been a surprise to many people over the years, but you don't have to be actually driving a motor vehicle when your ability to drive is impaired by alcohol or a drug to be convicted of that offence. Simply being able to set the vehicle in motion, engine running or not, may be enough for a conviction because you have care and control of the motor vehicle while you are impaired.

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