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RCMP is launching its annual holiday check stop program this weekend.

On Sunday RCMP officers across the province will be out on the roads participating in the Selective Traffic Enforcement Program, focusing on finding impaired drivers and other high risk driving behaviours.

Over 11,700 vehicles were checked last year at 262 check stops across the province, RCMP said in a news release. As a result, 105 people were charged with impaired driving and there were 30 roadside suspensions. RCMP said five people died in traffic related crashes.

"The RCMP is committed to ensuring the safety of everyone traveling on Manitoba roads and educating the public in safe driving practices continues to be our priority," Insp. Chris Moore said in a news release. "We are doing our part by raising public awareness about road safety and conducting traffic enforcement programs, the driving public have to do their part by adjusting their driving habits to make Manitoba's roads safer."

The check stop program will be running until Jan. 1, 2020.

We’re kicking off our Holiday Checkstops this weekend. During the holidays last year, 11,700+ vehicles were checked in 262 checkstops = 105 people charged w Impaired Driving & 30 roadside suspensions. Let’s all work together to ensure every Manitoban rings in the new year #rcmpmb

— RCMP Manitoba (@rcmpmb) November 29, 2019


This year’s check stop program comes less than a month after the province introduced the new immediate roadside prohibition.

Under these new rules drivers who register a ‘warn’ – a blood alcohol content of 0.05 to 0.079 – will be given a $400 fine for a first violation, $500 for the second, and $600 for the third and subsequent offenses.

Drivers who register a warning will also lose their vehicles for three days for a first offence, 30 days for third and subsequent offences. Drivers can also have their license suspended for three days on the first offence, and up to 60 days for any following offences.

Drivers who fail a test by having a blood alcohol content of 0.08 or higher, or by refusing to take a test will be given a $700 fine, along with an immediate three-month license suspension. The driver’s vehicle will also be impounded for between 30 to 60 days.

The province said drivers who fail a test will also have to use a mandatory ignition interlock for one year.

This program starts Dec. 16, 2019.

-With files from CTV’s Josh Crabb