Wine tasting and driving!

Wine tasting and driving!

Postby southy » Aug 19th, 2019, 10:36 am

I'm somewhat hesitant to write this and it is not my intent to crush the wine industry. I had relatives from Alberta out last week who wanted to do some wine tastings. I offered my services to be the DD. After visiting wineries down south, in Naramata and then Summerland I came to the conclusion that there are a number of impaired drivers on our roads daily. I saw way to many individuals who had obviously been doing tastings throughout the day and it showed hop in their vehicle and drive off to their next tasting adventure. I also witnessed younger people riding bicycles without helmets while doing tastings, roads are narrow enough for vehicles no need to add impaired cyclists as well. The one thing I did not see during my three days was one police vehicle. I realize the wine industry is huge for the Okanagan, however, at what cost? I'm sure the police simply do not close their eyes and say … "hey it's for the good of the wine industry". But one has to wonder why there is not more patrols in these heavier wine areas. I know what I saw and I wasn't impressed. Even my relatives commented on the possibility of tasters being impaired and that they shouldn't be driving. Thank goodness we have wine tour companies to help combat this problem and I would hope more and more people will take advantage of them. On a positive note - I was also surprised at just how busy most of the wineries are at this time of the year. Good for our local economy. Just throwing this out there to see if anyone else has any idea on how to combat what appears to be a serious issue.

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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby seewood » Aug 19th, 2019, 10:48 am

A little notification at the wine tasting bar asking drivers to taste and spit might help.

The driving habits of tasters seem to move to the sewer as they toodle along 10-15k's under the speed limit with 8 or more vehicles behind them then braking suddenly for a non signal turn into a winery.

Just about T-boned one yesterday while out on the bike yesterday....
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby TylerM4 » Aug 19th, 2019, 10:51 am

I share your concerns. I live on a wine route and am within a 10min walk of 3 wineries.

I'm not so worried about the helmets. If people want to risk their own lives that's fine - helps weed out the dummies. But when they get behind the wheel and risk the safety of my family it's another thing.

I'd also like to see greater enforcement. We have established "wine routes" why do we never see any roadblocks/checkpoints looking for impaired drivers along these routes?

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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby soupy » Aug 20th, 2019, 11:44 am

I'd sure like to see a road block set up one day.

Once word got out there would be a lot of people sleeping in their cars in Naramata for the night.
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby southy » Aug 20th, 2019, 12:47 pm

soupy wrote:I'd sure like to see a road block set up one day.

Once word got out there would be a lot of people sleeping in their cars in Naramata for the night.


It's not just Naramata Soupy, I saw it down south in Osoyoos and Oliver and I saw the same thing in Summerland. I can only assume wineries to the north are the same. I tend to think it is one of those topics elected officials and RCMP just don't want to talk about.

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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby Bsuds » Aug 20th, 2019, 1:30 pm

Make the Wineries responsible.

They should ask who the driver is or watch as they get out of their cars.

Sorry no samples for you sir you are the driver.

Or have a breathalyzer at every Winery.

Wineries who don't follow the rule loses their serving license and a hefty fine.
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby 2manyfords » Aug 20th, 2019, 1:43 pm

Or have the "enforcement" team just park outside or around the corner like they do at most pubs...

But...I guess pubs aren't about tourism :130:

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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby soupy » Aug 20th, 2019, 2:01 pm

Bsuds wrote:Make the Wineries responsible.

They should ask who the driver is or watch as they get out of their cars.

Sorry no samples for you sir you are the driver.

Or have a breathalyzer at every Winery.

Wineries who don't follow the rule loses their serving license and a hefty fine.


Establishments cannot legally serve intoxicated patrons.
But installing breathalyzers or having staff inspect every driver is a little much i think.

A few well timed road blocks and advertising the number of drivers caught would be a great start IMO.
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby Anonymous123 » Aug 20th, 2019, 5:19 pm

Bsuds wrote:Make the Wineries responsible.

They should ask who the driver is or watch as they get out of their cars.

Sorry no samples for you sir you are the driver.

Or have a breathalyzer at every Winery.

Wineries who don't follow the rule loses their serving license and a hefty fine.



I believe they already are responsible.

https://www.go2hr.ca/training-education/serving-it-right
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby GordonH » Aug 20th, 2019, 5:28 pm

Wine tasters be responsible either have DD or take one of those Okanagan Wine Tours.

Eat cheese & taste all the wine you want, leave the driving up to someone else.
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby 1791 » Aug 20th, 2019, 6:18 pm

Was lucky to spend the day in Penticton working. Had to go to the dump. What a nice spot. Drive past about 14 wineries on the way to the landfill. Narramata seems as close to heaven as anywhere ive seen yet. God bless those who support that lifestyle.
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby OKkayak » Aug 20th, 2019, 6:45 pm

Is there actual evidence of a higher rate of accidents due to impairment in that area? Or is it just assuming that people are driving drunk because of the wineries?
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby southy » Aug 20th, 2019, 7:28 pm

OKkayak wrote:Is there actual evidence of a higher rate of accidents due to impairment in that area? Or is it just assuming that people are driving drunk because of the wineries?


Can't give you actual numbers, but from friends I have in Naramata, they claim they are seeing more accidents and near misses this summer. I can personally attest that part of the problem I saw on that snake like piece of road is wine tasters not exactly sure where they are going or where they are going to stop. Their speed ranges from 10k to 60 maybe 70 back down to 20 then … oh, let me put my brakes on and turn here without signalling. They are oblivious to the fact that they have anywhere from 5 to 10 or more vehicles behind them. Has to be very frustrating for the local Naramatians who drive that road daily.

Also OKkayak, I think if an individual is out doing wine tastings you can expect them to try probably 3-5 wines per location. Not much per location but add that up over the day and yup, impairment is a result. And who knows perhaps there are those who are also indulging in some smoke along the way. I find it unusual that the police are not more visible in these areas.

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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby oldtrucker » Aug 21st, 2019, 1:47 pm

Hey, just wait another 10 years...there will be cannabis tasting to go with the wine tasting.
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Re: Wine tasting and driving!

Postby soupy » Aug 21st, 2019, 2:07 pm

oldtrucker wrote:Hey, just wait another 10 years...there will be cannabis tasting to go with the wine tasting.


won't take 10 years. And both scenarios just fine if people act responsible and have a sober driver.

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