Sask. government introducing tougher anti-drunk driving rules
Zero tolerance age to be raised to 21 from 19
The Saskatchewan government is toughening up its anti-drinking-and-driving rules, including one that lets police seize vehicles.
The new rules unveiled Monday are to come into effect on Jan. 1, 2017.
Under the proposed rule changes, experienced drivers found to have .04 to .08 per cent alcohol in their blood — on a first offence — will have their vehicles seized and impounded for three days.
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Currently, there are no vehicle seizures for experienced drivers with that blood-alcohol level.
The age at which there is zero tolerance for alcohol or drugs is also being raised.
Currently, there is an automatic 60-day licence suspension for drivers under the age of 19, as well as all new drivers, when they are caught with any alcohol in their system.
The "young drivers" age is being boosted to 21 and under.
Also included in the changes are longer terms for ignition interlock devices in drinking-and-driving case.
Ignition interlocks require people to breathe into a tube and prove they are alcohol free before their vehicles can be started.
Some 44 per cent of all road fatalities are alcohol-related, Saskatchewan Government Insurance says.
Cellphone law changes also coming
In addition to new anti-drinking-and-driving rules, the government is also moving to tighten up its cellphone law.
The current law forbids people from using phones while driving, but there have been some court cases where defendants successfully argued they were only looking at their phones or holding them.
The proposed changes will clarify that in addition to using cellphones, drivers will be banned from holding and viewing them.