EDITORIAL: Stats continue to surprise

The local numbers are surprising. Provincial numbers are disappointing

The local numbers, according to Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP, are surprising.

Provincial numbers, according to those at head office, are disappointing.

RCMP officers across the country kicked off their Christmas tradition over the weekend, the CounterAttack campaign, with a goal of targeting drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs.

In the North Okanagan, while no impaired driving charges were laid, 14 motorists were given 90-day Immediate Roadside Prohibitions (IRPs) after failing a roadside check and had their vehicles impounded.

Provincially, more than 32,000 vehicles were checked on Dec. 7, the start of the CounterAttack campaign, and officers arrested five people for impaired driving and more than 100 motorists were issued 90-day driving prohibitions and had their vehicles taken away.

What more can RCMP do to get their message out to drivers?

The answer: nothing.

Every year, the RCMP lets people know that during the holiday season, they are going to be out in full force, day or night, checking vehicles for driver impairment. This is not a new campaign. It’s been going on for years. RCMP detachments use social networks as well to get that message out.

Yet, as the numbers indicate, people continue to ignore the message.

It’s the holiday season, a time for celebrating with loved ones, friends and work colleagues. Go ahead and celebrate but plan ahead. Have somebody else drive you home. It really is that simple. Think of the consequences to you and others if you get caught, or worse, harm someone.

—The Morning Star