Everyone should be responsible while driving

RCMP and police officers are people who young children look up to and respect. In Ponoka, we have a great detachment of officers who are often seen as unsung heroes as they protect our streets and town. Often you will see them speaking to young children whose eyes pop when they see the men and women in their uniform.

RCMP and police officers are people who young children look up to and respect. In Ponoka, we have a great detachment of officers who are often seen as unsung heroes as they protect our streets and town. Often you will see them speaking to young children whose eyes pop when they see the men and women in their uniform.

The Ponoka detachment of the RCMP are very respectful and responsible, even during the recent RCMP Victim Services Gala there were taxi announcements made for those who needed another way home.

In Edmonton over the weekend a 29 year-old police officer was charged with three counts of impaired driving causing bodily harm, three counts of dangerous driving causing bodily harm and one count of driving with a blood alcohol level over the legal limit. The officer has been suspended with pay from the Edmonton Police Service after he was in a crash in the early morning hours of May 11. An 18 year-old boy was injured and sent to the hospital with a broken collarbone and severe burns on his back after being trapped in a burning pickup truck. Two others were also sent to hospital.

As the investigation into this accident continues, the repercussions will be costly if the officer is found guilty. Before one judges too harshly, you must remember in Canada, someone is innocent until proven guilty. Whoever is responsible for the crash will have to live the rest of their lives with the guilt of causing the accident.

It is true that everyone does make mistakes but if any officer of the law gets behind the wheel of a motorized vehicle they should know the law and the effects.

Ponoka RCMP Sgt. Glenn Demaere thinks that for the RCMP it can be a difficult job for them.

“It is a double-edged sword, despite what society would make a police officer we are still human. We will have people who make mistakes or wrong choices,” said Demaere. “However, I expect our members are held to a little higher standard. Police are expected to enforce these laws and regulations and they are exposed to the results, the accidents, deaths and the tragedies of impaired driving.”

Gladys Shelstad is the president of the local Edmonton chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, in an Edmonton Sun article she said: “a cop being charged with drunk driving sabotages the message the organization and police have been trying to get out. It minimizes it to the point where people say if a police officer can do it, then I can do it.”

It is true, officers are role models and work so hard to get the message out to make healthy lifestyle choices. It is important that even though there was this incident, police officers should not be judged for one officers mistakes.

Canada has made progress in its fight against impaired driving, Transport Canada statistics show that in 1995, 1,296 motor vehicle deaths involved an impaired driver, which is 50 per cent higher than the 851 fatalities in 2005.

Accidents that are related to impaired driving are preventable and there are so many options available to a person who is intoxicated before they get behind the wheel. They can call a friend, a taxi, walk or stay where they are. Impaired driving affects so many people. When I was eight years old my mother was hit by a drunk driver. She was stopped and the other car hit her car from behind and rolled it over in a ditch. It was devastating as a young child to watch her pain as she recovered from her back injuries. Some injuries that she still has to deal with to this day.

As the May long weekend approaches, which some even dub May Two-Four (after the number of beers in a case), it is important to remember if you drink, don’t drive and celebrate responsibly.

Be Among The First To Know

Sign up for a free account today, and receive top headlines in your inbox Monday to Saturday.

Sign Up with google Sign Up with facebook

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Reset your password

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

A link has been emailed to you - check your inbox.



Don't have an account? Click here to sign up