Holiday RIDE snares more drunk drivers

The annual RIDE program in Barrie resulted in more impaired driving related charges over the Christmas holidays than was the case a year ago, according to numbers just released.
As in previous years, the Barrie Police Service partnered with MADD and Arrive Alice-Drive Sober to educate the public about the perils of drunk driving, and apprehend drivers operating a vehicle while impaired. The program caught a spike in charges over the same period a year ago.
Police operated the same number of spot-checks, and stopped about 40 per cent fewer vehicles than in 2012. However, arrests for impaired driving related offences jumped 24 per cent; in 2012, police charged 16 drivers with impaired driving related offences, while most recently 21 arrests were made.
Barrie police chief Kimberley Greenwood said she finds it concerning that people continue to drive under the influence of alcohol.
“This type of behaviour jeopardizes the safety of the community that we live in. We need to remind everyone to drive sober and to be responsible if they are going to be drinking. We encourage everyone to plan ahead, arrange a designated driver, call a cab, take public transit, plan to spend the night. Impaired driving is never worth the risk. Our service will continue to be vigilant in our efforts to identify impaired drivers and remove them from our roadways making our community a safer place.”
The Barrie Police Service says it will continue to conduct RIDE checks throughout the year.