A Canadian man from Calgary has been given a 45-day driving suspension and slapped with a fine of CAD$800 after he was caught by members of the RCMP near Black Diamond speeding at 110 mph – almost twice the legal speed limit.
According to reports by a local newspaper, the man opted for a weak defence, telling the mountie that he had “just washed his car and was simply drying it off.”
A constable with the the Turner Valley RCMP, told reporters: “I would think if I was placed in that situation, to keep one’s composure would be a bit of an effort. That’s in the top one or two (excuses), for sure.”
“Most officers aren’t unsympathetic to reasonable, urgent or dangerous situations or something like that, but an excuse like this just would not fly with anybody that I could see,” Christie said.
“It’s a horrendously dangerous speed and there’s no excuse for it at all. The speed speaks for itself.”
The final numbers for Canada’s 2016 road toll will be officially released in early January, but the preliminary indications are that the total number of fatal incidents increased compared with the 2015 number, which itself was an increase vs. the prior year.
Crucially, Canada has one of the highest rates of fatal accidents caused by drivers that are impaired by alcohol among developed countries. A 2015 US-led study named Canada as the worst country among an index of the world’s 19 most-developed nations in terms of the rate of DUI-related deaths.
It’s also a worry statistic that crashes involving alcohol and/or drugs are the leading criminal cause of death in Canada.
While there is no indication that the man involved in the speeding incident near Calgary was intoxicated, it’s a timely reminder as the holiday period comes to an end that alcohol, speed and driving do not mix.
“It’s important to remind the public as we move into a new year that road-related accidents remain one of the major preventable causes of death in Canada,” said a traffic safety expert who was interviewed by a local newspaper. “Don’t drink and drive, don’t speed, and look out for potential hazards while driving.”
Asked for his thoughts on the case of the Calgary driver who was caught speeding and used the ‘drying my car’ defence, the traffic safety expert declined to comment.