Ottawa police lay 19 impaired driving charges over Canada Day long weekend

The sign outside Ottawa police headquarters on Elgin Street. (Leah Larocque/CTV News Ottawa)

Ottawa police say 19 drivers are facing impaired driving charges following the Canada Day long weekend.

All 19 drivers are facing criminal charges and have had their driver’s licences suspended and vehicles seized, police said in a news release on Monday.

Three of the 19 were allegedly impaired by drugs, according to police, and three were involved in collisions.

Early Sunday morning, police said three drivers were arrested within 20 minutes in the city’s west end.

Officers tried to stop a driver on Terry Fox Drive just after 2:15 a.m. Sunday but the driver sped off. He was arrested later in Stittsville, hiding in his vehicle.

A short time later, police responded to a rollover on Cedarview Road. The female driver was taken to the hospital. Police charged her, claiming her blood alcohol content (BAC) was three times the legal limit.

A third person was arrested on Palomino Drive around 2:30 a.m. after police received a report from a citizen who said a drunk man had gotten behind the wheel and was driving on Eagleson Road. Police claim the man’s BAC was twice the legal limit.

“Beyond the obvious danger that impaired driving poses to the community, these drivers also put a heavy strain on emergency services as police, fire, and paramedics are diverted from other calls,” said Acting Staff Sergeant Wayne Stangle in a release.

Police are urging anyone who suspects someone is driving impaired to call 911.