Operation Red Nose Ottawa says it needs more volunteers to keep up with demand after having to close their phone lines early over their opening weekend of the season.

The organization, which is only beginning its second year in existence, released a statement Monday apologizing to potential customers and it said volunteers are "greatly needed."

"The overwhelming demand outweighed our short supply of volunteers," the statement read.

"Though this means potential customers had to make alternative plans to get home safely, ORN Ottawa is encouraged to see the large number of responsible drivers in the city."

The lack of service was only limited by the low amount of volunteers, it added.

Operation Red Nose is a not-for-profit designated driver service that runs from 9 pm. to 3 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights throughout December and on New Year's Eve. It is free to use.

The group is looking for volunteers to work a minimum of four hours on any night as a driver, dispatcher or in an administrative role.

Operation Red Nose serves Barrhaven, Blackburn Hamlet, Gloucester, Kanata, Nepean, Orleans, downtown Ottawa and some areas in Gatineau. It expanded the coverage already offered by the Gatineau counterpart, Operation Nez Rouge.