The traffic laws related to content on this page are changing on Jan. 1, 2017. Get the details on Law changes for 2017.
Impaired driving can result in driver's licence suspensions, alcohol and drug education programs, fines, penalties and fees.
The Traffic Safety Act along with the Driver Licence and Suspension Regulations, and The Vehicle Impoundment Regulations provide SGI with authority over driving rules and the consequences of not following them.
Who do these consequences apply to?
New drivers - if you are caught with any amount of alcohol or drugs in your system you will be suspended at roadside and face other consequences such as vehicle impoundment. There is zero tolerance for alcohol and drugs.
Experienced drivers - the provincial legal limit is .04 Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) and under. Drivers that register a BAC exceeding .04 to 0.08 (warn range) will lose their licence and face other consequences such as vehicle impoundment.
The administrative consequences for Criminal Code offences such as exceeding .08 BAC, refusing a breath test or Standardized Field Sobriety Test (SFST) applies to all drivers along with vehicle impoundment and other consequences as outlined in the table below.
Note: Refusing a breath test or an SFST will result in a charge under the Criminal Code and an immediate roadside suspension will remain in affect until the charges are resolved in court.
Non-alcohol related convictions
Non-alcohol related Criminal Code convictions require completion of alcohol and drug education programs.
|Administrative consequences and costs|
|Administrative Consequences||Warn Range
Zero drug and alcohol tolerance for all new drivers1 and drivers under 19 years of age
Experienced drivers with .04-.08 BAC
|Fail Range (Over .08) or Refusal|
|1st Offence||2nd Offence
(within 5 years)
|3rd and Subsequent
(within 5 years)
(within 10 years)
|Immediate Roadside Licence Suspension2||Experienced driver - 3-day suspension
New driver - 60-day suspension
|Experienced driver - 21-day suspension
New driver - 120-day suspension
|Experienced driver - 90-day suspension
New driver - 18-month suspension
|Criminal Code charges immediate roadside administrative suspension until charges are resolved.|
|Vehicle Impoundment3||New driver - 3 days||All drivers - 7 days||Experienced driver - 14 days
New driver - 7 days
- (.08 to .15 BAC) - 30 days
- (.16 & over) or refusal - 60 days
|Estimated Minimum4 Towing, Storage Costs||$190||$250||7 day - $250
14 day - $355
|30 day - $595
60 day - $1,045
|Safe Driver Recognition5||$0 - $1,000||$0 - $1,000||$0 - $1,000||- (.08 to .15) BAC - $1250
- (.16 & over) or refusal - $22506
|Impaired Driving Education Programs||Experienced driver - DWI
New driver - DWI
|Experienced driver - ADE
New driver - ADE
|All drivers - Addiction assessment||All drivers
- 1st offence - DWI
- 2nd offence - ADE
- 3rd & subsequent - addiction assessment
Impaired Driving Education Program Costs
|$150 for DWI||$450 for ADE||$150 for DWI or $450 for ADE if required|
|Ignition Interlock Requirement||n/a||New driver - voluntary igntion interlock after 60 days for 120 days||Experienced driver - Mandatory igntion interlock for 365 after 90-day suspension
New driver - Voluntary igntion interlock after 365 days for 365 days
- 1st offence - 1 year
- 2nd offence - 2 years
- 3rd & subsequents - 5 years
|Ignition Interlock Cost||n/a||$545||$1,185||$1,185 - $5,025|
|Estimated Total Cost||$340 - $1,340||$1,245 - $2,2457||$1,435 - $2,5407||$3,180 - $8,7707|
- New drivers include anyone in the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) program or Motorcycle GDL program (Endorsement 6, M1, M2) and anyone with a restricted or provisional licence.
- Roadside suspensions are separate and distinct from any charges a driver faces in court.
- Mandatory vehicle impoundment.
- Based on rates for vehicles under 5,500 kg and urban towing and storage costs.
- Penalties are assessed through the Safe Driver Recognition (SDR) program - amount depends on driver’s safety rating.
- Criminal Code convictions for causing injury or death will result in a $2,500 penalty.
- Based on the maximum amount.
- Plus legal costs, court fines and penalties.