Very few pot problems in Windsor in first week
Some Canadian police forces are hesitant to use a federally approved roadside test for marijuana impairment. (File/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
It has been legal for just over a week and Windsor police are reporting very few problems when dealing with the new cannabis legalization in Canada.
Chief Al Frederick tells CTV News there have been only four service calls relating to marijuana and they have all been nuisance calls.
Police issued one charge of impaired driving by drug last week, and a ticket was issued for another cannabis infraction.
But Frederick says they still have a lot of concerns about the device used to test drivers to see if they are impaired by marijuana.
‘One of the big drawbacks is the technology,” says Frederick. “It's a large cumbersome piece of equipment and it's been described to me as the size of a toaster. The mechanism by which you have to gain the saliva is also cumbersome and it doesn't operate in extreme weather variations. I'm not certain it's going to get much use across the country."
The recreational use of marijuana officially became legal Oct. 17.
The federal government says newcomers should be aware that stiffer rules for impaired driving could lead to their deportation.
The new impaired driving penalties will take effect on Dec. 18 and the offences will fall under the definition of serious crimes.
The immigration department says if convicted, permanent residents could lose their status and have to leave the country.
Marijuana was also discussed at the 2018 Ontario Tourism Summit, hosted in Windsor this week.
The President of the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario, Beth Potter, says their partners will have to be prepared to inform visitors about the use of pot.
Potter adds they also need to look at the legislation more closely to see how it impacts their workplaces and their employees, and the overall tourism industry.
“It's only been legal for a week so we need some time to understand the implications and also understand how it pertains to visitors,” says Potter.