February 6, 2007
Bill C-376 on drinking and driving limits to be debated today
Ottawa, Ontario – Bill C-376, which will establish a new 0.05 per cent blood alcohol content (BAC) legal limit for drinking and driving, will be debated in the House of Commons today. The bill was introduced by Kelowna B.C. MP, Ron Cannan.
The legislation introduces the new 0.05 per cent BAC to complement the existing Criminal Code impaired driving offences. It differs from the current 0.08 per cent BAC in three significant ways: it streamlines procedures and contains ticketing provisions; it contains lower penalties than those for the 0.08 per cent BAC; and it also contains special criminal record provisions.
“We are supportive of Mr. Cannan’s legislation because research from around the world indicates such measures will save lives on Canada’s roads,” says Robert Solomon, Legal Director of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Canada. “His Bill will effectively reduce the amount a person can currently drink and then legally drive. The proposed 0.05 per cent BAC offence is designed to deter impaired driving without being unduly punitive, or creating greater burdens on the police and the courts. The ticket option of pleading guilty without having to go to court may discourage accused persons from needlessly challenging the charges.”
MADD Canada CEO Andrew Murie says, “This legislation will not interfere with ‘social drinking’. It won’t stop people from having a drink or two after work or with a meal. It simply provides police with a further option for getting that person who has had too much to drink off the road and out of harm’s way.”