RIDE results encouraging: Shuttleworth

Published on Tuesday, 24 January 2023 07:43

If there was any question that Dauphin residents were ready to celebrate the recent holiday season with family and friends following two years of pandemic lockdowns it was answered by the successful return of the local Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere (RIDE) program.

While the numbers were still not quite at pre pandemic levels, program spokesperson Sarah Shuttleworth is pleased with the results.

“I was expecting the results to be a little bit lower than past years, of course, just because of the pandemic,” Shuttleworth said. “But I am happy with with the statistics for this year.”

This year, 48 volunteers worked a total of 725 hours during 145 shifts and safely transported 282 holiday revellers to their destination through 141 trips.

During RIDE’s last season in 2019, 47 volunteers worked 134 shifts during which they transported 357 passengers through 163 trips.

While the total number of trips decreased by 16 per cent and the average of 35 passengers per night in 2022 was down from the 51 counted in 2019, Shuttleworth was pleased to see the number of volunteers attracted by the program increase.

“I saw a lot of younger volunteers this year which was really nice. In past years, the age demographic has definitely been older when it comes to our volunteers. But this year there’s a lot of new volunteers and younger volunteers which was also nice,” she said, adding the number of people utilizing the Dauphin RIDE program reinforces the demand and need for the service.

Community support, awareness, promotion, and volunteerism is the driving factor of the program’s success, Shuttleworth said.

“It’s been 30 years and we’ve done well and it’s definitely nowhere near the end,” Shuittleworth said, thanking the program’s sponsors and supporters for the role they play in RIDE’s success. “It’s something that our community needs, obviously, it’s shown that through the statistics. So I’m hoping that it can continue for many years yet.”

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