Smashed car campaign using 'shocking visual' to prevent impaired driving in Sask.
A new Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) campaign aims to prevent getting behind the wheel impaired with smashed cars on the side of high-traffic roads.
The smashed car display was unveiled on Tuesday in Prince Albert. MADD chapters in other cities, such as Regina and Estevan, are also taking part.
The display is currently along Highway 2, just north of the city, but will be moved to two other locations. The last display will end in September.
“It’s a very shocking visual. We consider this like a moving billboard,” said Karen Anthony-Burns from MADD Prince Albert.
Her son, Daniel Carter, was killed after being hit by an impaired driver while crossing the street in 2010.
“We still struggle with the loss 11 years later, and it’s still as impactful as it always was. It’s in our hearts all the time. Our hearts are broken,” she said.
Anthony-Burns said it’s important to plan ahead. If you’re planning on drinking or doing drugs, she said to make sure you have a safe ride home in advance.
“Don’t cause any more tragic consequences,” she said.
“We can choose to do the right thing.”
The campaign is in partnership with SGI, the City of Prince Albert and the police.
Police Chief Jon Bergen said emergency workers get to see the effects of impaired driving first-hand.
“Our emergency responders see this reminder every time they respond to an accident and come across somebody who has been hurt or injured, or even someone who is driving in a way that needs to be corrected through enforcement,” he said.
Like Anthony-Burns, Bergen said driving impaired is a decision putting yourself and others at risk.
“That decision can’t be undone,” said Bergen.
According to SGI, last year, 32 people died as the result of impaired driving in Saskatchewan.
Bergen said Prince Albert police have investigated 36 impaired driving files so far in 2021, and 30 have resulted in charges. In 2020, officers investigated over 100 impaired driving files and 200 Report Impaired Drivers complaints.