Five police officers from Delta became members of Alexa's Team last week in recognition of their diligent efforts to remove impaired drivers from the roads.
The BCAA Road Safety Foundation, ICBC and the Middelaer family honoured the officers and others at an event in Surrey last Thursday.
Corporals Peter Somerville and Mark Booth, as well as constables Michelle Larsen, Guillaume Fauchon and Kyle Winslow, all of the Deas Island RCMP, joined the team that has grown to more than 1,000 officers since its inception in 2008.
To be nominated for Alexa's Team, officers must have removed at least 12 impaired drivers from the road in the previous calendar year through a criminal charge investigation or through an administrative driving prohibition.
"As a family, we are heartened to see that there has been a significant decrease in the number of people injured and killed by impaired drivers over this past year," said Laurel Middelaer, whose four-year-old daughter Alexa was killed by an impaired driver in East Ladner in 2008.
"We know that the members of Alexa's Team have served unwaveringly to make our communities safer."
The provincial government reports the number of fatalities related to impaired driving (drugs, alcohol, prescription medication) continues to drop, from 126 in 2010 to 73 in 2011, and preliminary data for 2012 shows a historic low of 59.
Preliminary RCMP data for 2012 also indicates that the number of impaired drivers on the road has significantly decreased with fewer drivers being charged.
Alexa's Team has grown over the past five years from 26 members to over 1,000 new and returning members who are RCMP and municipal police officers from all corners of the province. Since 2008, team members have processed 41,354 impaired driving charges or penalties against drivers in violation of B.C.'s impaired driving laws.
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