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Manitoba proposes law to close loophole for impaired drivers

The Manitoba government has introduced amendments to the Highway Traffic Act to restrict appeal rights for impaired driving charges.

“Public safety is our government’s main priority and that is why we are protecting Manitobans by closing the loophole that would allow impaired drivers to delay the installation of ignition interlock devices,” said Wiebe. “Anyone who agrees to participate in the new Alternative Measures program needs to be aware that this is not an ‘easy out’. They will be subject to the same one-year ignition interlock requirements as someone who was convicted.”

Weibe says the program would allow people who have been charged with impaired driving to enter into an agreement with the Crown to participate in a rigorous impaired driving awareness and education program rather than being prosecuted in court.

Click to play video: 'Impaired driving prevention program gives Manitoba youth ‘a realistic look’'

Impaired driving prevention program gives Manitoba youth ‘a realistic look’

Once completed, the driver is required to participate in the ignition interlock program, the minister noted.

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“For too long impaired drivers have circumvented the rule of law,” said Trevor Ens, president, MADD Winnipeg. “They put their indecent and selfish choice to drive while under the influence above the safety of everyone else on the road. MADD Winnipeg applauds the choice of the Manitoba government to close these loopholes and hold those individuals accountable for their violent crimes.”

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MPI will notify participants in the Alternative Measures program of their obligation to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle.

Failure to comply will result in MPI having the authority to suspend their license.

Currently, people facing suspension have the right to appeal to the Licence Suspension Appeal Board, but the proposed amendment seeks to eliminate this appeal option.

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