POLICE ASSOCIATION OF NOVA SCOTIA 67 Canada Safety Council C A N A D A ’ S V O I C E A N D R E S O U R C E F O R S A F E T Y If youʼve been drinking, you do have options Too many Canadians choose to take the wheel after theyʼve been drinking. A recent survey shows there may be over four million road trips a year during which the driver is impaired. Those between 19 and 34 are the most likely to drive after drinking. Not a smart choice. In 2003 there were 902 road fatalities that involved a drinking driver. Of these, drinking drivers themselves accounted for half (450). Over one-fifth of the fatalities were passengers of drinking drivers — in many cases also the result of an unwise personal choice. The Canada Safety Council urges Canadians to drive sober — or plan on an alternate way to get home safely. Call a family member, a friend or a cab for a safe ride home. A designated driver is another good option, but choosing to ride with a driver whoʼs been drinking is not. Maybe you can stay overnight. But taking the wheel is absolutely not an option if you think you may be impaired. If youʼre stuck and donʼt have a phone number for a taxi, try calling 1-888-TAXIGUY (1-888-829-4489) to connect with a taxicab company in your community. If youʼre using a payphone, you donʼt even need a quarter. The Canada Safety Council officially endorses TAXIGUY, which has offered drinking and driving prevention tools since 1998. Through its national network of 450 taxicab companies linked to an easy-to-remember toll-free number, 1-888-TAXIGUY (English) and 1-888-TAXISVP (French), service is available in over 700 cities and towns across Canada. TAXIGUY, Inc. also operates SMART CALL™; a safe transportation strategy for licensed venues and the TAXI DOLLARS™ program, The National Taxicab Currency that allows businesses, charities and consumers to obtain taxicab fare for anyone, anywhere in Canada. On September 23, 2004, TAXIGUY celebrated its one millionth safe ride home. Sobering Stats • The Canada Safety Council is a sponsor of the Road Safety Monitor, a Canada-wide telephone survey of Canadians drivers. In its December 2005 report on drinking and driving, 15 percent of respondents — an estimated 3.2 million — admitted to driving after drinking within the past month. Two-thirds did so once or twice in the previous month but close to 16 percent of drinking drivers (about 2.3 percent of all drivers) had done so more than four times. • Moreover, 6.7 percent said they had driven in the past year when they felt they were over the legal limit. That translates into 1.5 million drivers. Drivers aged 25 to 34 are the most likely to driver after drinking; 19 percent report doing so. A small group of drivers (less than three percent) accounted for 84 percent of all reported impaired driving trips. • Only about one-third of drivers were aware of a lower alcohol limit in their province which can result in a 12-or 24-hour licence suspension. The Road Safety Monitor 2005 - Drinking and Driving, Traffic Injury Research Foundation Updated December 2005 © 2006 Canada Safety Council h t t p : / / w w w . s a f e t y -