Stunt driving charges up 71%: OPP

OPP cruiserOntario Provincial Police (OPP) officers were kept busy over the Thanksgiving weekend during the national four-day traffic safety initiative called Operation Impact. Enforcement efforts seem to be having an impact because preliminary statistics show that the numbers of charges in two of the four main causal factors in motor vehicle collisions are down over the same period last year.

What is alarming to police after this long weekend is that the number of stunt driving charges on Ontario roads are up 71% over the same period last year.

Speeding and distracted driving charges are down, however police report the number of seat belt and impaired driving charges are up.  Across the province, 478 seat belt charges were laid, and 83 people were charged with impaired driving. Four people lost their lives this weekend in fatal motor vehicle collisions; speed was a factor in two of the deaths, and in one of the fatalities, alcohol was involved.

“I find the weekend statistics alarming.  Following the OPP’s annual Fall Seat Belt Campaign that began in late September and resulted in almost 5,500 seat belt related charges being laid, it is disappointing to learn that people are still not wearing a seat belt. Motorists in this province know that wearing a seat belt can save your life. It is senseless for anyone to be in a moving motor vehicle without buckling up. OPP officers will remain vigilant beyond any traffic safety campaign to ensure that Ontario’s roads are the safest in the country.” Chief Superintendent Chuck Cox, OPP Highway Safety Division.

The OPP is reminding all motorists to start preparing their vehicles for winter, and to be ready to drive according to extreme and changing weather in the months ahead.

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