Immediate consequences to an impaired driving stop

Impaired driving trouble starts right on the roadside

If stop by police for suspected impaired driving some consequences could be immediate.

Immediate Roadside Suspension Program

Federal limits for alcohol : In all Canadian provinces, the maximum legal blood alcohol concentration (BAC) for fully licensed drivers is 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood or 0.08. Driving with a BAC of over 0.08 is a criminal (federal) offence and the penalties are severe.

Provincial limits for alcohol

In Alberta, and in most other Canadian jurisdictions, if your BAC is between 0.05 and 0.079, you will also face provincial consequences through the Immediate Roadside Suspension Program.


First time within a 10-year period you will receive: an immediate 3-day driver’s licence suspension, a 3-day vehicle seizure.

Second time within a 10-year period you will receive: an immediate 15-day driver’s licence suspension, a 7-day vehicle seizure, Crossroads course.

Third and subsequent times within a 10-year period you will receive: an immediate 30-day driver’s licence suspension, a 7-day vehicle seizure, IMPACT program.

For more information, see the Immediate Roadside Sanction Program Information Sheet.

Alberta Zero Alcohol/Drug Tolerance Program

The Alberta Zero Alcohol/Drug Tolerance Program applies to drivers with a Class 7 Learner’s Licence or Class 5 – Graduated Driver’s Licence (GDL). These drivers must have a zero (0.00) blood alcohol concentration or blood drug concentration when driving.

In addition to the provincial sanctions below, drivers will also be subject to any criminal charges and federal penalties imposed by the court.

For each 30-day suspension received during the final year of the Graduated Driver Licensing Program, you will be required to remain in the GDL program for an additional year.

For more information, see the Alberta Zero Alcohol/Drug Tolerance Program Information Sheet.

24-hour suspension program

Drivers who are suspected of being impaired by alcohol, drugs or a physical or medical condition that affects their ability to safely operate a vehicle are subject to a 24-hour licence suspension.

Drivers who receive a 24-hour suspension for medical reasons may have their file reviewed by Alberta Transportation’s Driver Fitness and Monitoring staff to determine their fitness to drive.

Drivers who meet the requirements for the Alberta Administrative Licence Suspension Program, the Immediate Roadside Suspension Program or the Alberta Zero Alcohol/Drug Tolerance Program will be subject to the applicable sanctions for those programs.

(Black Press Media file photos)

-Government of Alberta

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