Basically, no matter what your license status (whether it be G1, G2 or a full G), if you are under the age of 21, you are not allowed to have any alcohol in your system at all or you could face a license suspension. Previously, it was just the G license holders who could have the legal amount of alcohol in their system.
Under Ontario’s graduated licensing system, all drivers are currently allowed to have small amounts of alcohol in their blood once they have earned a full “G” license.
But starting Sunday, drivers aged 21 and under who have been drinking will automatically lose their licenses for 24 hours and could face a fine up to $500 and have their license suspended for 30 days.
Anyone caught breaking the rule three times will have their license cancelled.
I applaud these rules. And think with this legislation, the government could even push forward even more and attempt to increase the amount of people who cannot drive with alcohol in their system.
Considering kids could not drink and drive with the way the Ontario licensing system was, this should not hamper them at all. If anything, being unable to drive with alcohol in my system for the four years I had my G1 and G2 got me into the habit of not getting behind the wheel after I had a drink.
Even today, I will have just one drink if I know I have to drive. My life is more important than a glass of booze.
Some kids that just turned 19 and hold their full G license will no doubt the angry about this move, but to the kids just getting their licenses today or currently holding a G1 or G2, the new law makes no difference. And that’s where the strength in this law is: Introduce it to the young drivers who don’t know any better, and haven’t formed bad habits. Bad habits are what kill people on the road.
If the government continues their crackdown on drinking and driving, Monday’s ban could be the start of a further ban. Whether an outright ban of drinking and driving for all drivers will come to fruition or even be possible remains to be seen.
But at least for today, the Ontario government has done something right.
Photo courtesy of jburns00 on Flickr. You can see more of his photos here.