Las Vegas DUI Injures Four Calgarians

Vacations don't come with a safety guarantee, as four Calgary citizens were all too suddenly reminded when a semi-truck collided with their taxi in Las Vegas this past Wednesday.

Though laws concerning DUIs can vary considerably from province to province, let alone from country to country and in the many states of our southern neighbor, there is nowhere in North America where it is legal to operate a motor vehicle if your BAC (blood alcohol content) is above a defined amount indicating intoxication.

In Alberta and throughout most of the United States and Canada, that threshold BAC is .08, drivers with a higher BAC can be criminally charged with impaired driving. In Alberta, there are also administrative penalties for those driving with a BAC between .05 and .08.

The driver of the semi-truck in this incident has been charged with three counts of drunk driving for this single incident, in which he crossed a dividing line into oncoming traffic and collided head-on with the taxi before attempting to flee the scene. Given Nevada's laws, it is likely he would have faced more severe punishments had the incident occurred in Calgary.

Three of the four Calgary-native passengers in the taxi remain hospitalized, with one still listed in critical condition. The fourth passenger was released after being examined and treated for minor injuries.

The taxi driver was not seriously injured in the collision.

Despite happening far afield, this story should serve as a reminder in Calgary to avoid drinking while driving, and to obey the impaired driving laws wherever they roam.