On-duty Uber driver charged with impaired driving in York Region over holidays

Jan 2 2019, 1:46 pm

An Uber driver was one of 22 people charged with impaired driving throughout the York Region during the holiday week between Christmas Eve and New Year’s Day, police said Tuesday.

In a news release, York Regional Police say on December 31 shortly after midnight, officers responded to Main Street in the Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville, located just over 40 minutes from Toronto, after a concerned citizen reported a possible impaired driver.

According to police, the suspect pulled into a parking lot at a location on Hoover Park Drive and was stopped by officers.

Officers learned that the suspect was an on-duty Uber driver who had attended the location to pick an Uber customer up.

The driver, 55-year-old Dennis Romanin from Whitchurch-Stouffville, was charged with impaired operation and having a blood-alcohol concentration over 80 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood.

Authorities also highlighted another incident that occurred just after 4 pm on Christmas Eve, when a witness called the police to inform them that a car pulled into his driveway and crashed into his house. When police arrived, they found a black Infiniti up against the corner of the home, with the driver apparently asleep with the car still running.

The driver provided a breath sample which read more than five times the legal limit, according to the release.

The driver was then taken to the hospital as a blood alcohol reading more than .300 is considered a potential “medical emergency.”

Artem Kulikov, a 29-year-old Vaughan man, was released from the hospital and charged with impaired operation and having a blood-alcohol concentration over 80 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood.

York police say the force has laid about 1,650 charges for impaired-related driving offences in 2018.

Seven people died on York Region roads this year in collisions where alcohol or drug impairment were considered contributing factors, police said.

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