As a Canadian, you have a treat coming up. August Long Weekend is just about here, sending most of you off to fill up your coolers and strapp kayaks to your cars in preparation for a few days of fun.
End of story? Not quite. If it weren’t for the issue of drinking and driving, there would be nothing more to say. However, the August Long weekend is one of the days of the year that sees the highest number of drunk driving incidents.
Apart from the obvious but oft-ignored warning not to drive after drinking, here is some cautionary advice for the civic holiday:
- Drive defensively. Even if you’re sensible enough to avoid drinking and driving, the person in the lane next to you might not have gotten the memo.
- No drunk boating, bicycling, ATV driving or snowmobiling either. If it’s a vehicle, it must have a sober driver.
- Designate a driver. If you are drinking during the holiday, designate a driver for each leg of the trip, and ensure that the designated driver stays sober.
- Buckle up. A surprising number of Long Weekend incidents involve drivers and passengers who don’t take this simple precaution.
- Watch for fatigue. A long, tiring road journey can be just as dangerous as one involving drinking. Stop for a rest, or share driving, and avoid the genuine impairment that fatigue brings.
Very few countries are given a holiday whose purpose is basically to get you off work and out to the beach. So enjoy your civic holiday this year – safely.