(Finlayson Street at Douglas Street / ItkasanImages)

Let’s celebrate the Canada Day long weekend, Victoria—but safely!

With the Canada Day long weekend quickly approaching, ICBC and law enforcement are  urging drivers to prioritize safety by proactively planning ahead if their summer plans include consuming alcohol.

Every Canada Day, ICBC said that there is an average of 605 crashes in BC, resulting in approximately 176 injuries. Notably, Vancouver Island alone accounts for 89 of these crashes, causing 23 injuries.

Starting this weekend, ICBC said police across the province will increase enforcement and conducting Counter Attack road checks to locate and apprehend impaired drivers.

“No matter where you are this summer: if you drink, don’t drive – arrange a designated driver, call a taxi or rideshare, or take transit. Together we can make our roads safer for everyone,” said ICBC in a media release.

“There’s no excuse to get behind the wheel after drinking. Every time someone is injured or killed due to impaired driving, it’s preventable,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General.

“If you’re planning your weekend celebrations, night out, or even a day at the beach and it involves alcohol, be sure to also plan how you’re getting home. The key to preventing impaired driving is planning ahead. Save lives – take a taxi, ride share, ride transit, or arrange a designated driver.”

An average of 1,400 people are injured in 2,362 impaired driving related crashes in BC every year. On Vancouver Island, 11 people are killed and 303 injured in 508 impaired driving related crashes every year on average.

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