Impaired Driving Costs Us All

By Ron Fanfair, Toronto Police Service Published: 5:41 p.m. December 11, 2013

If you are out drinking and need a ride home, choosing a cab instead of getting behind the wheel yourself might just save you over $15,000 in legal, insurance and other costs attributed to being charged with impaired driving by police.

A car with decals and colours of Beck Taxi on the rear end and Toronto police scout car on the front end with lettering describing costs due to impaired driving on hood
A Beck Taxi? A police scout car? It is more a reminder that impaired driving costs us all

A cab ride in the city is pegged at $40.
Simply put, driving impaired could be extremely costly. This is clearly illustrated on a new promotion – The Frankencar -- unveiled by Toronto Police and Beck Taxi at Mel Lastman Square on Nov. 27.

The back half, resembling a Beck taxi, has the cost of a taxi ride while the front end, looking like a police car, spells out the huge financial penalties associated with driving impaired as well as the licence suspensions.

“People have options when they drink and drive,” said Traffic Services A/Supt Gord Jones.

“You can choose to spend time in a police car or go home safely in a cab. This is a visual as to how the decision you make can affect you one way or the other. The choice is yours.”

Kristine Hubbard, Beck Taxi’s operations manager, said her company is proud of the collaboration with the Service.

“This is a huge initiative and we are so proud to be part of it,” she said.

We are part of the community and we always want to participate in things like this that will keep the community safe. A taxi is a great choice for a safe ride home. There are choices to be made and the police have laid them out clearly

“We are part of the community and we always want to participate in things like this that will keep the community safe. A taxi is a great choice for a safe ride home. There are choices to be made and the police have laid them out clearly.”

Sgt. Doodnath Churkoo, on hand for the launch, said educating the public about the consequences of impaired driving is critical.

“It comes down to choices,” he added. “Ride a cab if you drink or risk getting arrested and facing the consequences that are spelled out on the front of this car.”

Supt. Selwyn Fernandes, the 32 Division unit commander, conceived the idea for the split car vacationing in Savannah, Georgia two years ago.

“I saw a car like this outside a police station and I immediately thought this will be a good way to get the message out in this city that drinking and driving do not go hand in hand,” he said.

“One of my officers has a contact at Beck and they gave us a shell of a car. Last summer, the Youth in Policing Initiative students helped out with the sanding and painting of the vehicle and the guys in the Fleet Unit put in the wording…This is a great educational tool. Most times when we do safety initiatives, we don’t tell people about the consequences.”

The Frankencar will be outside police Divisions across the city, outside shopping malls and at other designated venues year round.

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