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Police asking drivers to 'Aim for Zero' this holiday season

The provincial Holiday RIDE campaign was launched at Waterloo Regional Police headquarters on Wednesday

Police have one request as many us will soon be making the rounds celebrating the holiday season - "Aim for Zero".

That is the theme of the provincial Holiday RIDE campaign, which was launched at Waterloo Regional Police headquarters on Wednesday morning.

"'Aim for Zero' includes zero alcohol. Zero cannabis. Zero other drugs. Zero crashes and zero charges." explained Waterloo Regional Police Chief, Bryan Larkin.

He says crashes involving alcohol or drugs remain the leading criminal cause of death in this country, "And we know that the impacts these deaths have on the victims, families and the ripple impacts on our communities ... academic institutions and the pressures they put on our insurance industry and our public health services."

According to Larkin, on average, four people are killed each day in alcohol or drug related crashes in Ontario.

"RIDE programs remain an integral and important part of road safety, because they create a visible reminder to motorists to not drive impaired. It's such an important part of our day to day policing."

He says there are many ways you can plan ahead and "Aim for Zero". 

You can take a cab, use a ride sharing service, hop on public transit, or call a friend for a ride.

"So it's extremely important and it remains concerning to us, as police leaders that people continue to drive impaired ... and some days it seems that some people aren't just getting the message," Larkin added.

Ontario Provincial Police say so far in 2019, 38 people have lost their lives as the result of impaired driving on the highways and roads they patrol.

"Many of our members of our frontline know first-hand the effects this is having on our staff, but also on which the communities we serve." added Rosie DeMarco, Deputy Commissioner of the OPP. "So this is an opportunity for everyone in our community to take time and to be part of the awareness, recognize the effects of impaired driving,"

The campaign begins Friday, November 22 and runs until Thursday, January 2, 2020.


Blair Adams

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