Manitoba Strengthens Impaired Driving Laws

a police vehicle pulling over a pickup truck

Impaired driving should be taken extremely seriously as it can cause bodily harm or death to those around you. When your blood alcohol concentration is too high to get behind the wheel of the car, you need to find an alternative solution to navigate getting home. Manitoba is now strengthening its impaired driving laws to make it even less appealing to drive while under the influence. 

What do you need to know about new impaired driving laws? Below is a quick breakdown of what drivers can expect when it comes to impaired driving offences:

No Third-Party Collision Coverage

Perhaps the most significant change for those who operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol is that they won’t have any third-party liability coverage. This means that whatever damage you cause to another party will come at your own expense. Insurance will no longer cover hospital bills, medical bills, or car repair bills for those with alcohol-impaired driving or drug-impaired driving. 

Keep in mind that the damage done to other motor vehicles or persons as a result of your impaired driving will still be paid for by Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI). This ensures that your victim can get the help they need in a timely manner. 

After the initial expense is paid for, MPI will seek compensation and reimbursement from you, the driver. This fact should be enough to cause you to think twice about driving under the influence. 

Licence Suspensions

The other rules regarding licence suspension still apply to these instances of impaired drivers. If you fail a drug recognition evaluation, blood alcohol concentration test, or physical coordination test, you may face a tiered licence suspension. Suspensions can last anywhere from 72 hours to 60 days and may also include vehicle impoundment and fines. 

Two suspensions or more within the same decade will require you to complete an Impaired Driver Program at your expense. You will also move down five levels on the Driver Safety Rating Scale. There may be other roadside sanctions placed on you if you fail a mandatory alcohol screening. 

Administrative Licence Suspension

If you drive impaired and have a blood alcohol concentration equal to 0.08 or higher, you may be at risk for a three-month administrative licence suspension. If you fail an approved screening device or refuse a blood sample, breath sample, or saliva test, you’ll be placed on administrative suspension. 

This will also lead to vehicle forfeiture, charges under the Criminal Code, Impaired Driver Assessment (at your own expense), and participation in the Ignition Interlock devices. 

Consult With a Professional Defence Attorney

If you have violated the criminal code by getting behind the wheel under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you’ll need a solid impaired driving defence. Brodsky, Amy & Gould knows the provincial law that governs Manitoba and can help you have a more favourable outcome from an impaired driving case. 

Reach out to us today to learn more about how we can help you build a solid case!