examplepicAlberta’s Stats on Drinking and Driving

Alberta Traffic Safety Plan Focus for August

Hard facts about impaired driving

  • When you drink and then drive, alcohol affects your judgment, reaction time and perception.
  • Over five years, approximately 8,600 people were convicted of impaired driving in Alberta each year.
  • On average in Alberta, one in five drivers involved in fatal collisions have been drinking prior to the collision. This compares to an average of about one in 20 drivers involved in injury collisions. As the severity of the collision increases, so does the likelihood the collision will involve a drinking driver.
  • On average each year almost 90 people were killed and 1,330 people were injured in collisions involving at least one driver who had consumed alcohol prior to the crash (2009-2013). In 2013, 80 people were killed and 1,133 were injured.

The consequences of drinking and driving

  • A driver with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over .08 or who refuses to provide a breath sample is charged under the Criminal Code. In addition, that driver will receive an immediate licence suspension, which remains in place until the criminal charge is resolved. The driver’s vehicle is also seized.
  • A driver with a BAC between .05 and .08 receives an immediate three-day licence suspension and a three-day vehicle seizure. The length of the licence suspension and the vehicle seizure increase for repeat offences.
  • Those with a graduated driver’s licence also face sanctions if they consume any alcohol and drive. These drivers receive an immediate 30-day licence suspension and a seven-day vehicle seizure.

Canada’s Stats on Drinking and Driving

Daily: Every day, on average, 4 Canadians are killed and 175 are injured in impairment-related crashes.

Annually: We estimate between 1,250 and 1,500 people are killed and more than 63,000 are injured each year in Canada in impairment-related crashes.

Please note that Transport Canada’s report estimates the fatality number at 1,074. This does not include impairment-related crash deaths involving boats, planes, trains, etc. Our estimate factors those in, hence the higher number. If you do use the Transport Canada number, please be sure to note that we believe it is a conservative estimate. (See the Magnitude document for further explanation.)

Did You Know?

Impaired driving does not just happen at night, it can occur any time of the day.

12:00 pm – 4:00 am is prime time for impaired driving.