Friday , December 3 2021

"A radical departure": Strict driving regulations apply in Canada, but experts warn for baseless searches


New rules that increase penalties for full driving and expand police forces to require breath tests will come into force across Canada on Tuesday, with some that assume that the law will meet a number of legal challenges.

The legislation, which passed in June, while new rules for damp driving, aim at combating injury and death by helping police catchers with more than the legal limit for alcohol in their bloodstream.

It allows the police to request a breath test from any driver whom they legally stay, lowers the bar from the previous legislation, which required an officer to have reasonable suspicion that a person had been drinking. Such a system is already in place in more than 40 countries.

Toronto-based attorney Michael Engel, who often defends those with impaired driving, said the new rules are a major change that gives rise to concerns about groundless searches.

"This is a radical deviation from previous teams, which isolated people from independent searches without a probable reason," he said.

The new rules can lead to a lag in the judiciary because lower courts are waiting for higher courts to make decisions about likely challenges to the constitutionality of the law, he said.

This is a radical deviation from previous teams, which isolated people against independent searches without a probable reason

"It's a brave new world," Engel said. "This is a wholesale change to the Criminal Code."

Civil rights organizations have also been alerted to the new rules, with the Canadian Civil Liberation Association to express concern that compulsory alcohol testing will unfairly affect racial minorities disproportionately identified by traffic jam police.

Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould has said that she has "all expectations" the law will be challenged at the courts, but noted that she is sure that it will pass the test. She said it was in line with the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Toronto Police spokesman Sgt. Brett Moore said that the lower standard for breathing tests gives officers another tool in the belt to stop wealthy drivers.

"The police do not have many inferior drivers," he said, and noted that people might be quite good at masking their deterioration.

"It's just a really good, strong message that there's a real high probability that if you get stuck by the police, you will be asked to submit a breath test."

So far, it is not clear that any of the measures, which are already quite punished, have some deterrent effect

The new law has also been welcomed by Mothers Against Drunk Driving Canada, which states that mandatory alcohol testing has proven to be a result of securing the roads.

According to the new rules, maximum penalties for many alcohol-free driving crimes are suspended for up to 10 years from five years, which the federal government and the police force for similar hopes that will be a deterrent to becoming drowning drivers.

But Engel said that if it has an effect remains to be seen.

"So far, it is not clear that some of the measures, which are already quite punished, have a deterrent effect," he said.

Provincial police in Ontario noted that between the beginning of 2018 and mid-November the officers had posted more than 7,300 lower driving charges.

According to federal statistics, on average, almost four people die in Canada daily due to reduced driving.

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