RoadWatch helping keep roads safe: Manitoba Public Insurance

Canada Road Safety Week: May 17-23

Nearly 1,500 impaired drivers have been taken off the road over the last six years thanks to RoadWatch, an impaired-driving initiative sponsored by Manitoba Public Insurance.

Over this same period of time (2010-2015), a total of 375,000 vehicles were screened by participating law enforcement agencies. In total, 12,000 Highway Traffic Act offence notices (e.g. suspended drivers, speeding, texting while driving, non-seatbelt use) were issued to offending drivers.

Now in its 18th year, RoadWatch begins again this Victoria Day long weekend, continuing until November. In total, nine police agencies are participating: Winnipeg, RCMP, Brandon, Morden, Winkler, Altona, Dakota, Rivers and Ste. Anne.

“Manitoba Public Insurance is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to eliminate impaired-related deaths and injuries,” said Ward Keith, vice-president, Business Development & Communications and chief product officer, Manitoba Public Insurance.

“By combining visible enforcement with public education, we are optimistic that Manitobans will think twice before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle after consuming alcohol or drugs. While fatalities and serious injuries related to impaired driving have been declining steadily over the past 10 years, we still lose far too many Manitobans in impaired driving crashes every single year.”

On average, 25 people are killed each year on Manitoba roads in impaired driving collisions. With road safety at the forefront, the launch of this year’s RoadWatch aligns with Canada Road Safety Week, a national weeklong effort to raise awareness about safe driving habits that runs from May 17-23.

Keeping impaired drivers off Manitoba roads is also a priority of law enforcement.

“Many Manitobans head out to cottage country during the spring and summer seasons, resulting in more cars on the road,” said Inspector Joanne Keeping, Officer in Charge of Traffic Services with the RCMP and chair of the Manitoba Association of Chiefs of Police Traffic Committee.

“It is essential for law enforcement and our road safety partners to work together to deter, reduce and prevent dangerous driving on Manitoba roadways. We are always working towards zero fatalities on the road, and high visibility RoadWatch checkstops are one more way we are doing this.”

Who is driving impaired?

  • Young males make up the majority of those involved in impaired collisions.
  • Males account for 73 per cent of impaired drivers involved in crashes.
  • Drivers under age 35 (all genders) account for 59 per cent of impaired drivers involved in crashes.
  • Drivers under the age of 35 have a rate of involvement in impaired driving crashes that is nearly three times that of drivers age 35 and older.
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