Don’t drink and drive: police
Thunder Bay health and law enforcement professionals are reminding the public to stay sober if they get behind the wheel this holiday season.
Thursday marked the kickoff of the annual Arrive Alive Drive Sober public awareness blitz, which encourages people to make other arrangements and avoid driving if they’re impaired.
“We’re getting closer to Christmas,” said Thunder Bay Police traffic Sgt. Glenn Porter. “We’re well into our Festive RIDE program. . . . There are lots of options, the awareness has been there for years and years.
“You always get the same thing when you’re processing that drunk driver in the booking room — ‘you’re gonna ruin my life,’” he said. “Really? Are we ruining your life, or are we stopping you from doing something even much more terrible?”
The Arrive Alive campaign encourages people to drink responsibly. If they do have too much, however, there are plenty of options: a designated driver, staying the night, calling a cab, or contacting Project Red Nose, for example.
“It’s a really important message to get out there, because, unfortunately, from the stats that we’ve been providing . . . this issue is not going away,” said OPP traffic Staff Sgt. Ken Mantey. “Either people are not getting the message, or they’re ignoring it.
“We’re not against anybody having fun and having a drink or two,” he said. “But if you’re going to have that drink or two, make sure you have a plan that you don’t get behind the wheel and drive.”
This year’s campaign is being backed by the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre, Ministry of Transportation, Thunder Bay Police, OPP and Thunder Bay District Health Unit.
(This story originally appeared in the Saturday, Dec. 22 print edition of The Chronicle-Journal)