PRINCE GEORGE- Friday night, the Ministry of Public Safety set up shop on Ospika Boulevard and randomly selected drivers to participate in an anonymous survey that collects impaired driving data. The survey asked a number of questions regarding impaired driving as well as breathalyzed and drug tested willing participants. Prince George is one of five communities across the province chosen for the survey this year. The Ministry declined to comment on this years survey but results from previous years can be found online. In the past, the surveys helped to determine how current laws impact drinking and driving decisions and made recommendations to further discourage impaired driving.
While the survey wasn't conducted by local RCMP, officers say impaired driving is an ongoing problem in Prince George. "Impaired by alcohol has been a consistent trend," said Sgt. Matthew LaBelle, "in terms of drug-impaired driving, it has increased but so has our tools in order to apprehend those individuals." The survey this year looked a bit different than past years, it included a few questions about drug use and driving, something LaBelle said some people don't realize can make you impaired. "Historically, we've always thought the person that was only heavily intoxicated was the danger out there but we're finding more and proving more that even lower amounts of alcohol, illicit drugs, or prescription medicine is causing impairment."
The last time the survey was conducted in Prince George was 2012.
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