After a successful meeting with law enforcement, business owners and other interested members of the community to come up with ideas to decrease the number of impaired drivers, the Estevan Police Service has begun implementing some of those ideas.
"It's amazing what you can accomplish when you get a bunch of minds together to go over things like this," shared Police Chief Paul Ladoucer.
"There were certainly some good recommendations. Some of them are pretty far-reaching and we're not by any means, saying that we're going to have the capacity to implement all of them. But there are a number of them that are easily implemented and those are the ones we're looking at first."
One of the ideas that the police are going ahead with is releasing the names of those charged with impaired driving.
"From a safety standpoint, when someone is charged with impaired driving, their license is suspended for a period of time. How is the public to know if they see that individual driving whether or not they should be behind the wheel of a car to begin with?"
He shared that this is something that other police services have done so they will try it here as well.
The names will be available on the Estevan Police Service website once it is back online.
Another suggestion that they have implemented is additional training with staff at restaurants and lounges.
"This isn't a case of finger-pointing at our licensed establishments. We all know that people consume alcohol often at private parties and residences but we want to make sure that those working in those establishments have a keen knowledge of what to look for and the signs of impairment."
"The other thing we're looking at is teaming up with establishments to come out with messaging to customers. That might be via coasters with advertisements on them reminding people to plan a safe ride home."
Many of the suggestions involved improved taxi service in and around the Estevan area.
"Obviously it's something we're looking at. Unfortunately, the taxi companies weren't able to be at the table at the last meeting. We're hoping they can be at the table for the next. This is in no way trying to assume that taxi companies should bear the cost of taking people home because we have to be mindful that these are businesses."
Some of the suggestions involved reminding businesses that if they are holding a function, to provide a safe ride home.
"Keeping in mind that it does remain the individual's responsibility before they are going out to drink to realize that, if there is a shortage of public transportation or taxis for my drive home, do I have another plan in mind?"
"Most people plan their night out in advance, they do all kinds of planning, but how much planning are they putting into for after the party? That has to be part of your plan."
"A lot of very good suggestions came out of the meeting. We are planning to have a further meeting to move forward on some of these recommendations."
There were four impaired drivers arrested from February 26th - March 6th.