With the long weekend approaching and motorcyclists, off-roaders, and boaters expected in big numbers, the Ontario Provincial Police is raising awareness of the behaviours and contributing factors that are common in deaths across all three of these recreational vehicles and watercraft.

This is in time for the 2019 North American Safe Boating Awareness Week Campaign which runs between May 18th and 24th.

In Ontario, campaign kicks-offs at Ontario Place in Toronto.

The OPP reports that of the total of 36 motorcycle deaths in 2018, the top contributing factors were seven for driving too fast for the conditions, six for excessive speed, and five for alcohol impairment.

Of those deaths, seven motorcyclists were not wearing their helmets.

On the water, police report 22 of the 24 people who died in last year’s boating/paddling incidents were not wearing a life jacket.

With 11 deaths resulting from falling overboard and seven from capsized vessels being the top primary causes in the deaths, the OPP says life jacket use may have reduced the number of boating deaths significantly.

Alcohol and/or drugs were involved in at least eight of the fatalities.

OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique says, “This long weekend, we can all contribute to the safety on our roads, trails, and waterways by never operating a motor vehicle or boat while impaired by alcohol and/or drugs”.