Military Police cautions against impaired driving

MP traffic stop
Archive photo: OS Justin Spinello, 4 Wing Imaging

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By Corporal Michael Isaac, 11 MP Flt – The Courier

A misunderstanding of the effects of cannabis can lead to serious consequences for motorists and passengers. If deemed necessary, Military Police (MP) members on patrol may administer what is known as a Standard Field Sobriety Testing (SFST).

SFST officers look for specific psycho-physiological changes that occur in a person’s body when they are impaired by alcohol or other substances. These tests are scientifically valid, of an international standard, and useful indicators of impairment. The goal of SFST is to increase deterrence of impaired driving violations, and reduce the number of crashes, deaths, and injuries caused by impaired drivers.

SFST is not a new concept; it has been utilized by Canadian law enforcement since the early 1980s. The legalization of cannabis has made SFST a necessary method for determining non-alcohol related impairment, and MP units across Canada have members already qualified to conduct these roadside tests.

When employing SFST, Military Police look for elements that measure a person’s ability to perform both mental and physical tasks.

Although you may think or feel you are okay before taking the road, your performance during a SFST by police may show otherwise.

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