The following timeline is based on an uncomplicated impaired driving investigation.
(This timeline is applicable to BC and was prepared by RRID)
00:00 The suspect vehicle is sighted and pulled over.
00:02 Driver's documents have been obtained and an odour of liquor is noted on the driver's breath.
00:04 Driver is warned about being under investigation for impaired driving and the Approved Screening Device (ASD) demand is made.
00:05 Driver blows a fail on the ASD.
00:06 Driver is given the police warning and advised of his/her Charter Rights.
00:08 Breathalyzer demand is made.
00:09 24 hour suspension demand is made. Driver is placed in police vehicle for transport to the Detachment for testing.
00:25 A driving time of 15 minutes is assumed to arrive at the detachment. This estimate could be somewhat less or much more depending on the initial location.
00:27 Driver decides to contact Legal Aid for advice and an initial call is made.
00:47 An average time of 20 minutes for Legal Aid to return the initial call is assumed. The waiting time is seldom much less than this.
00:57 An average time of 10 minutes for conversation with Legal Aid is assumed. It is not usually much more or less than this.
Driver is taken to the breath testing area. Impaired drivers investigation guide is completed.
01:18 Face to face observation period to guard against mouth alcohol is completed prior to breath testing.
01:21 First breath sample is taken and analyzed. Sample over 100 mg. % is assumed for this scenario.
01:38 15 clear minutes are observed prior to test number 2. Sample over 100 mg % and within 20 mg % of the first sample is assumed. If not, a third test would be required. The driver's fingerprints and photograph are often taken in this waiting period.
01:41 Driver is escorted to a secure location to await preparation and service of documents. A ride home is usually arranged at this point.
01:56 Breath test technician prepares Certificate of Analysis. Investigator prepares an Administrative Driving Prohibition, a 24 hour Suspension Notice, a Promise to Appear for a court date, a Notice of Intention to Seek Greater Penalty by Reason of Previous Conviction if required.
02:00 Documents are served and the driver is released.
02:30 The investigator starts an investigation file. Details of the investigation are entered on the computer. The 3 circumstance pages of the ADP are completed and all pages faxed to the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles. A criminal record and a driving record are ordered. The file is organized and submitted to the supervisor for approval.
At this point the investigator may choose to return to patrol or if the shift is over can now go home.
03:30 A report to Crown Counsel is completed in triplicate. This consists of 5 or 6 typewritten pages depending on whether the investigator includes a narrative of events. Attached to this report are photocopies of the officer's notes, all documents produced so far except the ADP and 24 hour suspension, and a check sheet showing all pages included in the submission to Crown.
The file is now forwarded to Crown Counsel for a decision on charges.
07:30 A typical court appearance by the investigator to give testimony will occupy at least half a shift. This assumes that the trial runs when scheduled and there are no adjournments.
A typical impaired driving investigation with a court appearance and no complications will easily consume 7 1/2 hours of an officer's time.
If a collision gave rise to the circumstances, long distances are involved, repeat court appearances occur and other paper work is required this time estimate can easily become double or longer.