Family of man killed by drunk driver want a zero tolerance policy

WATCH ABOVE:┬áIt has been nearly 4 years since BC’s tough drinking and driving laws were implemented. But not everyone feels the rules are tough enough. Brian Coxford has more.

VANCOUVER – Ken Roffel and his family have published an ad in The Province every year since their son, Mark, was killed by a drunk driver in 1996.

The driver had sped through a stop sign, had no insurance or driver’s license, and had been pulled over earlier in the day for drunk driving.

But he was released.

Unfortunately, even though his blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit, he got off on a technicality in Mark’s death.

Since then the Roffels have been fighting for a zero tolerance policy for drinking and driving.

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“He was an important part of our family, as all members are,” said Mark’s father Ken. “I think about him and rather than doing nothing, which would be the easy thing to do, I guess it was part of our calling to say ‘hey, let’s stop the drinking and driving so other families don’t experience this pain’.”

The idea of a zero legal limit has been adopted by several countries in Europe.

“It takes a long time to introduce a bill, that takes an MP to bring it to parliament, and have it voted on and the fact is, most other countries in the world range from 0.0 to 0.2, which is Finland, Sweden and Russia and the ones beyond that are from .05 to .08, which is what the category we fall in,” said MADD Canada’s National Director Bob Rorison.

He said in Canada four people die every day as a result of drinking and driving crashes and 164 are injured.

“The public should not drink and drive,” said Rorison, adding that people need to change their attitudes first.