Friday morning a new campaign was launched by SGI, as the battle to end impaired driving in Saskatchewan continues.
Minister responsible, Joe Hargrave along with Victoria’s Tavern in downtown Regina launched the “Be a Good Wingman: Don’t Let Impaired Friends Drive” campaign.
The campaign challenges Saskatchewan people to do the right thing and stop friends from getting behind the wheel when they’re impaired, not matter how uncomfortable it may seem at the time.
Minister Hargrave spoke to those in attendance and said the message is simple.
“Whether you’re at a party, a barbecue, a football game, out at the lake, or out at a pub like this one, (Victoria’s Tavern) or any situation that involves alcohol or drugs don’t let impaired friends drive,” Hargrave said.
Hargrave added a couple minutes of an uncomfortable situation is much easier than a life time of regret.
“Even if it’s a difficult conversation, you are not being impolite, you are possibly saving the life of your friend or someone else’s life. Your friend will eventually sober up and may thank you for keeping him or her out of jail, the hospital or worse,” Hargrave said.
A new commercial that will run both on T.V and radio was revealed as well.
It features two versions, one where a group of life long friends let a man get behind the wheel while impaired, and one where they stop him and call a cab saving his life in the end.
The new campaign comes after a month where the province saw the most impaired drivers caught in 2017, with 376 in July.
Something Hargrave is optimistic about as he said the increased enforcement is doing its job.
“We know that there’s more enforcement out there because we have encouraged it from all the police forces. So the fact that the number is going up doesn’t surprise me because we’re out there and we’re pushing hard. We want to make sure these impaired drivers are picked up and that they’re not causing injuries and they’re not causing deaths.” Hargrave told reporters.
In 2016 on Saskatchewan roads, 54 people were killed and and 456 were injured in more than 1,000 accidents involving drugs or alcohol.