Issue 16-235: Impaired Driving

December 14, 2016

Police in British Columbia recorded 11,652 instances of impaired driving in 2015. Reported instances of impaired driving occurred at a rate of 249 people per 100,000 of the population. Of the total, 11,256 of drivers were impaired by alcohol, while 396 were impaired by drugs. (Note that the number of recorded incidents of impaired driving does not necessarily equate to the actual incidence of impaired driving).

Of B.C.’s census metropolitan areas (CMAs), Kelowna had the highest rate (323 per 100,000), followed by Victoria (271), Abbotsford-Mission (218) and Vancouver (164).

Nationally, there were 72,039 instances of police-reported impaired driving in 2015, translating to a rate of incidence of 201 per 100,000 of the population. Among the provinces, rates ranged from 575 in Saskatchewan to 111 in Ontario. Men (80% of charges in 2015) remain far more likely to be charged with impaired driving than women (20%), but the proportion of females charged has increased over the past three decades. The incidence of impaired driving is notably higher among drivers aged 20-24, as well as among individuals who play team sports.

Data Source: Statistics Canada