It doesn't take much alcohol to impair your driving: Just because you've only had a couple of drinks doesn't mean you're okay to drive.
Two years after B.C. introduced Canada's toughest provincial impaired driving law, an estimated 104 lives have been saved and impaired driving has dropped significantly.
Police in B.C. can issue an immediate roadside prohibition to an impaired driver with a blood-alcohol content (BAC) of .05 or higher. (The BAC is based on a breath sample into a roadside screening device.)
The vehicle the person is driving can also be immediately taken off the road and impounded for three to 30 days.
Costs related to these offences can add up to an estimated $600 to $4,060—even if it’s the first time a driver is caught.
Failing or refusing a breathalyzer test could also result in criminal charges.
If convicted, you would
If you drove while prohibited or suspended, your car could be impounded for a minimum of 60 days. You would also be subject to a $500 fine, jail time and more driving prohibitions.
If you drive over the legal alcohol limit or under the influence of drugs, ICBC may not cover you under your Basic Autoplan.
If you crash while drinking and driving, you’re likely in breach of your insurance policy. That means you could be personally responsible for 100 per cent of the costs if you damage someone else’s property or injure them.
Each year, we support enhanced police enforcement to shut down impaired driving through CounterAttack awareness campaigns in July and December.
B.C. drivers with a record of drinking and driving may be required to have an ignition interlock device installed in every vehicle they drive. The device requires that they provide a breath sample, and it will prevent them from starting the vehicle if they have been drinking.
Learn more about the Ignition Interlock Program.
Ignition interlock devices can also be used voluntarily. If you are thinking about having an ignition interlock installed, please visit www.acs-corp.com for more information. Thank you for making a responsible decision to drive smart.
Live Fast, Die Young by filmmaker Lauren Holmes shows the consequences of driving drunk. The film took first place in the Impaired Driving category for ICBC's 180 short-film contest. More films by B.C. youth about risky driving
Did you know?
About 33 per cent of motor vehicle fatalities are related to impaired driving.