Following the recent legalization of marijuana, members of the RCMP South Okanagan Traffic Services (SOTS) conducted an enhanced impaired driving enforcement campaign this weekend.
The aim of the campaign to remove any alcohol or drug impaired drivers from the roadway. All SOTS members are trained in SFSTs (Standardized Field Sobriety Testing). SFST officers can detect both alcohol and drug impaired drivers.
Roadchecks were conducted in Penticton, Osoyoos, Oliver and Keremeos.
Police said one driver was observed and suspected to be under the influence of cannabis. The driver was subjected to SFSTs and following that, an evaluation by a Drug Recognition Expert (DRE). The result confirmed impairment and the driver’s licence was suspended roadside.
Several violation tickets were issued under the new Cannabis Control and Licensing Act including two minors found in possession of cannabis ($230 each) and 10 violations ($230 each) for possessing cannabis within a motor vehicle (readily accessible to either driver or passengers).
Six alcohol impaired drivers were also removed from the roadway.
Local officers are trained and prepared to deal with drivers impaired by drugs or alcohol. It is recommended that motorists do not drive under the influence of cannabis or alcohol. There can be criminal consequences in either case.
Persons who plan to possess, transport or otherwise use cannabis should also educate themselves with the related legislation (Cannabis Control and Licensing Act) to avoid penalties.