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First 2 weeks of Festive RIDE campaign a success: OPP

Safety Minister Yasir Naqvi is participating in an OPP RIDE check in Toronto on Tuesday evening, two weeks into the annual holiday campaign.

Police are targeting impaired drivers in an effort to reduce alcohol-related fatalities during the holidays.

Sgt. Kerry Schmit said that so far this year’s Festive Ride program has been a success.

“Fortunately we’ve had no fatal collisions that were alcohol related from the start of our Festive Ride campaign,” Schmit explained. “Last year we had three fatal collisions during our Festive Ride season and in 2012 we had 10 people lose their lives in alcohol-related fatal collisions.”

From January to the end of September, just under 5,700 impaired charges were laid, which is down 17 per cent from the same period in 2013.

While the OPP are doing as much as they can, including watching for impaired drivers and setting up strategic RIDE checks, Schmit said everyone needs to do their part to make sure the roads are safe.

“We can’t do it alone. We’re out there making sure people are driving sober but we need everyone’s help to make sure that if they see or suspect an impaired driver, call 9-1-1,” he said.

Police want to remind the public that there is no safe amount of alcohol consumption when it comes to driving.

The Festive RIDE campaign kicked off Nov. 24 and runs until Jan. 2, 2015.