If You’re Suspended, Don’t Drive!

Police looking for suspended drivers and unregistered vehicles in November

In the meantime, see our Halloween safety tips for trick-or-treaters AND drivers

Regina, SK (Oct. 31, 2018) — The first thing you learn in driver education is that driving is a privilege, not a right. November’s traffic safety spotlight focuses on drivers who have lost that privilege.

Police across Saskatchewan will be watching for people and vehicles that shouldn’t be on the road due to suspended licences or lack of insurance. And it’s quick and easy with the use of automated licence plate readers (ALPRs). ALPRs are installed in law enforcement vehicles throughout the province. They scan and check every single licence plate they come across so if a vehicle is uninsured, owned by a suspended driver, reported stolen or otherwise flagged in some way, the device immediately alarms police.

#DoNotRiskIt

“Not only is it illegal to drive without a licence or insurance, but it’s dangerous,” said Penny McCune Chief Operating Officer of the Auto Fund. “These people may be suspended due to impaired driving, other dangerous driving behaviours or a medical condition. If they’re willing to risk driving without a licence or insurance, what other risks are they taking?”

There are 138 SGI-funded ALPRs in the province with 18 more expected to be installed by March 2019. Additional ALPRs will be installed in Ministry of Environment vehicles over time as part of the provincial Protection and Response Team’s efforts to reduce crime and expand the level of traffic enforcement in the province.

On any given day, there are about 54,000 suspended Saskatchewan drivers. Some are suspended for a few days, some indefinitely, some for one reason, some for multiple reasons. Some of these people, regardless of the penalties or legal prohibitions, choose to continue driving. Plus, a number of them choose to drive uninsured vehicles.

If you’re driving without a licence, a suspended licence, or an unregistered vehicle, you could be on the hook for all damages you cause – to your vehicle and anything you hit. Think about that! Maybe you don’t care if your low-valued vehicle isn’t covered in a collision – but what if you crash into a vehicle worth $50,000, or even a house?

“Regardless of why you ‘think’ it’s okay to drive without a licence, it isn’t. There are no excuses,’” said McCune. “If you’re caught, you will be charged and face costly consequences.”

The consequences for driving with a suspended licence include potential Criminal Code charges, fines, jail time and vehicle seizures. Consequences escalate with subsequent convictions. For example, you’ll receive a one-year provincial suspension and go to -20 on the Safe Driver Recognition scale for your first Criminal Code Conviction. If you’re convicted a second time, you’ll receive a three-year provincial suspension and another 10 demerits. A third conviction is a five-year provincial suspension. If you don’t have a licence for more than five years, you have to re-do all driver testing to get your licence back. The fine for driving an unregistered vehicle is $580 and one demerit point in the Driver Improvement Program. Repeat offences result in a seven-day vehicle seizure. #DoNotRiskIt!

SGI Quick Facts – Licensing and registration

  • 346 collisions, 173 injuries, 1 fatality involving suspended drivers or unregistered vehicles in 2017.
  • 929 claims were denied last year due to suspended drivers or unregistered vehicles.
  • ALPRs are used to find unregistered vehicles, suspended drivers, stolen vehicles and vehicles used in Amber Alerts.

About SGI CANADA

Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) is the province’s self-sustaining auto insurance fund. SGI operates 21 claims centres and five salvage centres across Saskatchewan with a head office in Regina. SGI also works with a network of nearly 400 motor licence issuers across the province. Customers can now do some transactions online. For more information, visit www.sgicanada.ca.

Source: SGI CANADA

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