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Police in Greater Sudbury launch annual Festive RIDE campaign

Impaired driving is still trending upwards, says GSPS traffic sergeant

The message from local police services is simple this holiday season: have a plan before you start drinking.

Drinking and driving is not trending downward, said Greater Sudbury Police Service’s new traffic sergeant, Ryan Johnson, during the media launch of the Festive RIDE campaign, which officially gets underway Dec. 1. That means it’s going in the wrong direction.

“The No. 1 preventative measure for impaired driving is having a plan,” said Johnson “Once you’ve been drinking, you’re more than likely to not make the right decision. If you know you’re going to be drinking, have a plan to get home safely.”

If holiday revelers do decide to get behind the wheel after drinking, be warned: Officers will be conducting RIDE checks any day, any time and anywhere, Johnson said.

“The world is hurting enough right now, so don’t add to the heartache by choosing to drink and drive,” Johnson said. 

Friday also marked the start of the Action Sudbury’s 32nd annual Red Ribbon campaign. The red ribbon is a symbol that represents the thousands of people killed or injured by drunk and drugged driving. It’s also a reminder to people to drive sober through the holidays, as well as the entire year.

During the launch, chair Ron Roy said Action Sudbury would like to pass along a few tips for the holiday season.

First, try to get a designated driver for your social bubble.

Second, if you’re hosting an event where alcohol will be served, you have a responsibility to get your guests home safe.

Third, due to the fact Safe Ride Home Sudbury will be operating this year, there is a good possibility local taxi services could be overwhelmed, so everyone should have a Plan B to get home safely.