Impaired driver jumps to back seat: stories from Canada Road Safety Week

May 18 to 24, 2021 was Canada Road Safety Week, and Saskatchewan RCMP Traffic Services officers were on the roads enforcing safety rules and removing dangerous drivers from behind the wheel.

During the weeklong enforcement campaign, Traffic Services officers gave 1,519 warnings, laid 10 impaired charges, and issued nine roadside suspensions, 972 speeding tickets, 78 distracted driving tickets, 84 seatbelt tickets and 204 vehicle defect inspection notices.

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Incidents investigated by Saskatchewan RCMP officers during Canada Road Safety Week include:

• On May 21, 2021 around 11:39 p.m., officers spotted a minivan speeding on Highway #55 near Pierceland. Officers attempted a traffic stop, but the driver tried to evade police by increasing speed to nearly 140 km/hr. The driver then left the driver’s seat entirely and moved to a back passenger seat – while the vehicle was travelling at highway speed. The vehicle abruptly stopped, causing a police vehicle to collide with it.No one was injured. The driver was charged with multiple offences including Impaired Operation of a Motor Vehicle, Dangerous Operation of a Motor Vehicle, Flight from Police Officer and Resist/Obstruct Peace Officer.

• On May 21, 2021 at approximately 7:46 p.m., officers observed a vehicle drive over multiple traffic cones at a check stop set up on King Hill in North Battleford. The driver was arrested and charged with Failure or Refusal to Comply with Demand.

• On May 23, 2021 at approximately 2:50 p.m., officers conducting a check stop on Highway #904 in Meadow Lake observed a vehicle backing away to leave. Officers soon located the parked vehicle. A passenger was observed throwing beer cans out the window and the driver was attempting to walk away from it. The driver was charged with Impaired Operation of a Motor Vehicle.

“The Saskatchewan RCMP is pleased to participate in Canada Road Safety Week, but our commitment to eliminating high-risk driving behaviours continues year-round,” says Saskatchewan RCMP Traffic Services Supt. Grant St. Germaine. “We will continue to focus our efforts on enforcing the “Big Four”: distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding and seatbelt misuse.”

Canada Road Safety Week is an enforcement-driven initiative led by the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police. It seeks to increase public compliance with safe driving measures in order to save lives and reduce injuries on our roads.