Solicitor General Shirley Bond had this statement today regarding the B.C. Supreme Court decision on Immediate Roadside Prohibition (IRP) legislation:
"Today, Justice Jon Sigurdson issued a decision on the constitutionality of B.C.'s Immediate Roadside Prohibition program and substantially upheld the program, saying that this is "validly enacted provincial legislation." The court did find that for those persons who blow over 0.08, there needs to be a more meaningful ability to challenge the device reading.
"Obviously, we are going to take the time to study the decision in depth so we can determine specific next steps and impacts. Government will, however, make a change to the Motor Vehicle Act to address the judge's concerns. The ability to challenge the approved screening device reading will be added to the current grounds for appeal.
"It's important to note that the IRP remains in place for those who blow in the "warn" range (over 0.05) and those sanctions - including licence suspension - are still in place. The public should also understand, and be assured, that if you drive today and blow over 0.08, you could be charged criminally under the Criminal Code and could still receive a 90-day administrative driving prohibition. Clearly, we are going to act quickly to make the fix that is required here to ensure we maintain the success we have had with saving lives in B.C.
"As announced this morning, the CounterAttack program will be fully functional during the holiday season, working to ensure we continue to see a downward trend in fatalities. In the first year since the introduction of the IRP, there has been a 40 per cent reduction in fatalities attributed to impaired driving."
Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General