Thursday, April 10, 2014
On the Road
Alexa's Team and local police see 52 per cent reduction in alcohol-related deaths
Released by Lennae Durant, AT
2013 Alexa's Team members from the Lower Mainland, including two Chilliwack RCMP members, were honoured at Southridge School in Surrey for keeping promise to family and reducing alcohol-related motor vehicle deaths by 52 per cent in B.C.
he members of Alexa's Team have delivered on their promise to the family of Alexa Middelaer, and other families that have lost loved ones to drinking driving, by significantly reducing the number of alcohol-related motor vehicle deaths in BC.
In recognition of their diligence and success enforcing the impaired driving laws of this province, ICBC, the Justice Institute of BC and the Middelaer family are honouring the 313 officers who form the 2013 Alexa’s Team at four events held in Surrey, Greater Victoria, Kelowna and Prince George.
“Alexa’s story reminds us that BC’s tough approach to drinking and
driving is in place to protect families, and it was in her memory
that we first brought in our tough drinking driving laws. Thanks to
the many police officers who enforce the law and keep us all safe
from injury and death on the road, 190 more people are alive today.
The Province is honoured to help recognize and thank this year’s new
members of Alexa’s Team for their service to British Columbians,”
said Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Suzanne Anton.
“It is in this tragic event that we find hope. As
the representative from the BC Association of Chiefs of Police I am
proud of the work done to date by our police officers," said Neil
Dubord, BC Association of Chiefs of Police Chief Officer. "But there
is still much to be done, and our level of resolve remains steadfast
in making BC roads the safest in the country. Alexa’s memory will
not be forgotten.”
“The 313 members of Alexa’s Team, from the RCMP and municipal police departments across the province, have risen to the challenge and demonstrated that commitment to a noble cause can save lives and make the roads of B.C. safer for all of us. Our objective remains to work with our road safety partners to eliminate impaired driving as a cause of fatal and serious injury collisions,” explained Insp. Ted Emanuels, RCMP "E" Division, OIC Enhanced Traffic Services Programs.
In 2012, Beirness and Associates Inc. conducted their bi-annual roadside survey to measure alcohol and drug use among BC drivers. The findings indicated that the levels of drinking and driving were the lowest ever recorded with 8.3 per cent of drivers testing over .05 blood alcohol content. The study also indicated that patterns of drug use by drivers were more consistent than alcohol use with 7.4 per cent of drivers testing positive for drug-impairment.
“We want to thank all of the dedicated police officers on Alexa’s
Team for their exceptional commitment to getting impaired drivers
off our roads. We’re proud to be part of this remarkable initiative
that has helped save countless lives. We can all do our part to keep
roads safe – plan ahead if your activities involve alcohol and
arrange for a designated driver, call a taxi or take transit,” said
John Dickinson, ICBC Director
“It is amazing to us that when a team of committed individuals are working collectively towards a goal that change can truly happen. We are humbled by the results of reduced fatalities, and give credit to our front line officers, who are supported by their leaders and government to truly make our roads safer for all our communities—well done Alexa’s Team!” concluded Laurel Middelaer, Alexa’s mother and road safety advocate.
• Alexa’s Team members have processed more than 50,000 impaired driving charges and penalties.
• The total number of team members has grown significantly, from 26 to 1,321, and includes officers from all regions of the province.
All-Star team members are the top impaired driving investigators in the province. Each has taken at least 34 criminally impaired drivers off the road in 2013.
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