Winnipeg police issue $672 fine to person getting high in vehicle on legalization day

Oct 18 2018, 4:59 pm

Just hours after cannabis was legalized on October 17, a Winnipeg driver was handed a $672 ticket getting high in their vehicle.

According to a Tweet from Winnipeg police, a driver was stopped for consuming “cannabis in a motor vehicle on a highway,” on Wednesday.

“So… this happened early this morning: A consume Cannabis in a Motor Vehicle ticket was issued. Just like alcohol, consuming cannabis is legal -and like alcohol, consuming it in your vehicle is not,” reads the tweet from Winnipeg police.

According to Ally Siatecki, media relations with the Winnipeg Police Service, the individual was not driving while high.

“In this case, there was no impaired charge that was laid. Regardless, if you are the driver or passenger, consuming cannabis in a vehicle is prohibited,” Siatecki told Daily Hive.

In Winnipeg, the following fines are issued for cannabis offences:

  • Supplying cannabis to a young person under age of 19 – $2,542
  • Growing non-medical cannabis in a residence in Manitoba- $2,542
  • Smoking or vaping cannabis in provincial parks- $672
  • Driver carrying cannabis in or on vehicle- $237
  • Driver carrying cannabis in or on off-road vehicle- $237
  • Consuming cannabis in or on vehicle on a highway- $672
  • Consuming cannabis in or on off-road vehicle – $672
  • Failing drug-screening tests as a novice driver – $113
  • Failing drug test as a supervised driver – $672

The federal government passed bill C-46 in June in order to “strengthen drug-impaired driving laws and create an impaired driving regime that would be amongst the strongest in the world.”

The bill made the following main changes to Canada’s impaired driving laws:

  • Roadside breath testing for alcohol can now be completely random
  • Roadside saliva testing can be used to test drivers for drug use
  • Drivers caught with THC blood levels equal to or higher than the federal government’s established threshold are subject to fines and criminal charges:
    • Caught with THC level between 2 ng and 5 ng: Maximum fine of $1,000
    • Caught with a THC level over 5 ng: First offence – minimum penalties of $1,000, second offence – 30 days imprisonment, third offence – 120 days imprisonment
    • Caught with a THC level over 2.5 ng and a blood alcohol concentration of more than 50 mg per 100 ml: Punishment same as above
  • A maximum sentence of 10 years can be given for impaired driving
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