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In New Brunswick, a young family of five was killed by a trucker who failed to notice traffic backed up near a construction zone, on July 23 of 2016. According to news reports, the semi-truck full of cooking oil was traveling too fast when it plowed into a vehicle, causing a fiery chain-reaction collision. The police felt that they had reasonable grounds to believe the driver was impaired by alcohol when he failed to notice that traffic had stopped.
There are many reasons why a truck-related crash might occur; however, many independent experts believe driving under the influence is a significant factor even though drivers are often reluctant to admit they were drinking or taking drugs during resting hours. Deaths related to impaired driving accidents were at record-breaking highs in 2015, when police reported to the 2014 Canadian Community Health Survey approximately 73,000 impaired driving incidents, a rate of 201 incidents per 100,000 people. Of the total number of incidents, 122 were cases of impaired driving causing death, and 596 were cases of impaired driving causing bodily harm.
The survey shows that approximately 3,000 trucks killed 3,800 people in Canada. Unfortunately, as the economy grows, more people die from truck-related accidents—setting a new record in 2015—totaling 3,500 wrecks, in which 4,000 people were killed (a 17% increase in four years).
What if I am Arrested for a DUI in Canada?
Canada has stringent laws with serious consequences for driving under the influence of alcohol or a drug. Each individual’s tolerance for alcohol or a drug varies. A person with a high tolerance for alcohol might not feel their ability to drive a motor vehicle is impaired after many drinks. However, a person with a low tolerance for alcohol might be impaired after just a few drinks. At the time you were driving, you may have felt that you were in control and not impaired or drunk. However, the Canadian Criminal Code sets out that you are breaking the law if you have a blood alcohol content exceeding 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 mls. of blood even if you only had a few drinks. Note that a lighter person might in fact blow over the legal limit with only two or three standard-size drinks in their bloodstream.
Impaired Driving-Related Offences
Canada’s Criminal Code cites various impaired driving by alcohol or a drug or “drinking and driving” related offences:
- Operating or having the care or control of a motor vehicle while the person’s ability to operate the vehicle is impaired by alcohol or drugs;
- Operating or having the care or control of a motor vehicle while having a blood alcohol content (BAC) higher than 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 mls. of blood;
- Impaired driving causing bodily harm or death;
- Driving a motor vehicle with a BAC higher than 80 mg% and causing bodily harm or death;
- Refusing or failing to comply with a breath demand;
- Refusal or failing to comply with a blood demand, oral fluid demand or urine demand;
- Refusal to participate in a Standard Field Sobriety Testing (SFST) or Drug Recognition Evaluation (DRE) testing without a reasonable excuse;
- Failing to Provide a Sample or Participate in SFST or DRE testing and causing bodily harm or death.
It should be noted that each of these Criminal Code sections also applies to vessels, aircraft, and railway equipment. If you are facing DUI charges in Canada, seek help from an experienced DUI lawyer. Unlike other non-criminal Highway Traffic Act-related charges (such as speeding or careless driving), which are easier to fight without a lawyer, a DUI conviction has serious consequences. If you plead guilty to a DUI or are found guilty, there are mandatory minimum penalties. However, judges will often sentence you to much harsher penalties-especially if another person was injured. To avoid or reduce the penalties for a DUI, find a lawyer who is experienced and knowledgeable about Canadian DUI laws.
How Can I Find a DUI Lawyer in Ontario?
When choosing a skilled and experienced DUI lawyer to handle your case, you should look for a firm that has a proven track record of handling cases similar to yours. At Kruse Law, our lawyers have successfully handled over 150 cases per year involving DUI’s. Our firm has the knowledge and experience needed to handle complex DUI cases. If you have been arrested for a DUI, contact us at +1-800-699-0806 for a complimentary evaluation of your case, or send an email to [email protected].