What is the cost for driving drunk or stoned?

It's not just about the cost of car insurance

The Mother's Against Drunk Driving (MADD) report for 2009 shows that Ontario has the most effective impaired driving laws in regards to reducing impaired driving. Each province will levy a fine and a license suspension against the convicted driver. This will greatly increase insurance rates once the license is reinstated.

Ontario took first place for their efforts to reduce drinking and driving with a grade of A-. This is a move up from 2006 when the last full report was done. In 2006 Ontario was in second place.

Ontario's program for impaired driving reform includes:

  • Comprehensive graduated licensing program for new drivers;
  • Penalty of a three day license suspension for blood alcohol concentrations over .05% ;
  • Vehicles are impounded; and
  • Mandatory alcohol interlock program for all federal impaired driving offenses.

The report for 2009 rates the provinces and territories for legislative initiatives that should significantly reduce alcohol and drug-related accidents, resulting injuries and deaths. The report grades each province or territory on the laws in force for:

  • Licensing;
  • Suspending and revoking of the licenses;
  • Remedial programs and vehicle sanctions.

Here is a list of the provinces and territories and the results of their ranking:

  1. Ontario: A-
  2. Manitoba: A-
  3. Prince Edward Island: B
  4. Nova Scotia: B
  5. Saskatchewan: B
  6. Alberta: B-
  7. British Columbia: C+
  8. Newfoundland and Labrador: C+
  9. Quebec: C-
  10. Yukon: C-
  11. Northwest Territories: D+
  12. New Brunswick: D+
  13. Nunavut: F

Where does your province rank? In Alberta to receive an impaired conviction will move you into the high risk market. Your rate there is then tripled! If you caused an accident while driving impaired then the rate could triple again.

Report Impaired Drivers (RID) is a program that encourages residents to call 9-1-1 to report suspected impaired drivers to the police is in Saskatoon and Regina, Saskatchewan.

It started in Saskatoon in March 2010. The police have received more than 1,050 calls, resulting in 71 impaired driving charges being laid.

There is more to it then a financial cost. Many a small town newspaper runs a court report. How embarrassed will you be when your name is published? If you are a professional driver you may have just lost your job. If you are applying for life insurance then this will affect your acceptability. What a price to pay for that extra drink!