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Basic Overview of Drunk Driving Laws in Canada

Basic Overview of Drunk Driving Laws in Canada

Our northern neighbor, Canada, enforces has drunk driving laws on their books. The Canadian Criminal Code has laws against impaired driving. The Canadian Criminal Code also prescribes the procedures for prosecuting drunk driving.

Not only has the Canadian Federal government taken action against drunk driving, the provinces and territories impose license suspensions, impound vehicles of repeat offenders. These provinces also prosecute and implement many laws within the Criminal Code.

The Criminal Code prohibits driving while one's ability to operate a vehicle is impaired by alcohol or drugs. It is per se illegal for anyone to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) over 0.08. This is the same limit many states in America enforce, including Kansas. This limit of .08 means, 80 mg of alcohol in 100 ml of blood. Canada imposes mandatory minimum penalties upon conviction for these offences. The penalties increase, if you have past offenses. Moreover, drunk driving associated with bodily harm or death carries serious penalties. Furthermore, the Criminal Code authorizes police to obtain a sample from anyone fro whom they have reasonable grounds to believe that a driver is drunk. If the suspect refuses to provide a sample, the penalty is the same as if they were found to be driving with a BAC over the legal limit.

The terms "driving while intoxicated" and "driving under the influence" are very common terms in the united States of America and we often refer to the as "DWI" and "DUI." However, these terms are absent in the Criminal Code of Canada. Rather, they use terms, such as "impaired driving," "impaired operation," and "impaired care and control." Also, the administrative sanction apply to driver license suspension at just the .05 BAC level. The Criminal Code sanctions apply at the 0.08 BAC level. There are nine specific drunk driving offences in their Criminal Code.