Bonny and Craig Stevenson unveil new mobile signs that will be placed around Saskatoon displaying where an impaired driver was apprehended on July 29, 2020.

Bonny Stevenson is hoping a new initiative from MADD Saskatoon will prevent the sleepless and miserable nights she experienced after the death of her son at the hands of a drunk driver.

Her son Quinn was killed on Aug. 3, 2013, in the early morning while on his way to work at the Saskatoon Golf and Country Club.

Nearly seven years later, Stevenson and her husband Craig unveiled signs at the MADD Canada monument on the lawn of city hall Wednesday that will be placed at different locations in Saskatoon displaying exactly where an impaired driver was caught by police.

“I get a lump in my throat and a pain ripping through my heart every time I talk about this day,” she said. “The heartache of losing a child is not something you get over.”

Stevenson, the MADD Saskatoon Chapter president, approached SGI, Saskatoon Police Service and city council to enhance impaired driving awareness and remind other drivers to report impaired drivers.

Stevenson will call the new initiative a success if only one person sees the new signs and gets an impaired driver off the road.

“That’s always been our goal — if we can save one life, one injury. All these 15-year-old kids we speak to. If just two of them go home and tell that story to their parents I feel like we’re getting somewhere,” she said.

So far 13 signs have been placed around Saskatoon. Police will give MADD Saskatoon a list of new locations every two weeks to cover all parts of the city.

Joe Hargrave, the minister responsible for SGI, attended Wednesday’s unveiling alongside Saskatoon police chief Troy Cooper and Saskatoon mayor Charlie Clark.

While impaired driving instances in Saskatchewan are declining, Hargrave hopes pointing out exactly where an impaired driver was pulled over by police only helps improve the statistics.

Hargrave said 21 people died from impaired driving in Saskatchewan in 2019, marking a 61 per cent decline over the last 10 years.

“It’s great that number is coming down from what it used to be. We used to be historically one of the worst (impaired driving provinces) in the country, but we’re not anymore,” Hargrave said.

“We want to bring that number down to zero — that’s my final goal.”

Stevenson thinks some people will be shocked to see where impaired drivers are caught.

Her son was a hockey referee used to cold Saskatchewan rinks late at night. She worried about his journeys home on those cold winter nights, but not on a warm summer morning.

“That’s a big deal with these signs. I hope people realize it happens everywhere,” she said.

“It’s in every neighbourhood.”

Source: CKOM Radio


Last updated on: 2020-10-08 | Link to this post