Third annual distracted driving event highlighted dangers of riding high

With the legalization of marijuana expected later this year, Niagara drivers will see first-hand the dangers of drugged driving at Thursday’s Distracted & Drugged Driving Event at the Seaway Mall. The event was co-hosted by CAA Niagara, AAPEX Driving Academy and the Seaway Mall.

With just over two thirds (69%) of Canadians concerned, roads will be more dangerous with the legalization of marijuana, this popular annual event will have participants complete various activities while wearing ‘marijuana goggles.’ The marijuana goggles simulate how cannabis impairs your reaction time, your ability to pay attention and your decision-making.

“It’s time to be blunt,” said CAA Niagara’s President and CEO, Peter Van Hezewyk. “Cannabis and driving don’t mix. While I’m confident most people understand that drinking and driving can be a lethal combination, it’s time we start talking about marijuana. Driving high is driving impaired.”

The event also aimed to debunk marijuana myths, such as drivers under the influence of marijuana are the same, or better behind the wheel. What seems like a ridiculous statement, is what one in four young Canadians believe. It’s time to start getting the facts out to the Niagara community.

“Although drugged driving will be a focal point of this event, distracted driving will also be at the forefront,” Mr. Van Hezewyk said. “Our mission is to keep Niagara roads safe which includes giving residents tips and tools for making positive driving choices.”

The event held at the Seaway Mall featured:

  • An interactive distracted driving video game
  • ‘Marijuana goggle’ activities
  • AAPEX Driving School activities, like trying to walk in a straight line with ‘drunk goggles’ on
  • Great prizes

“Driving comes with great responsibility and it is important that drivers are well aware of their obligations,” said Mike Belcastro, President of the Seaway Mall. “We believe that working together with industry experts to educate people is the first step towards a safer community,” he continued. “However, the most important message we want the community to take away from this event is that their life and the lives of others depend on their social responsibility not to drive while impaired.”


Event Details:

  • Thursday, June 14, 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. in the Seaway Mall Centre Court