West Kelowna drivers race past police officer

Three vehicles have been impounded for at least 30 days after police observed several drivers racing on Highway 97 near Ross Road early Monday morning.

A member of the Central Okanagan Traffic Services was on patrol Aug. 20 at 1:20 a.m. when he was passed at a high rate of speed by four vehicles.

The police officer noted the vehicles were travelling in excess of 140 km/h in an 80 km/h zone.

They were also changing lanes without signaling, weaving between lanes and trying to pass each other.

With the help of West Kelowna Mounties, three of the vehicles were stopped on Main Street in West Kelowna.

One of the drivers, a 26-year-old West Kelowna man, was found to be prohibited from driving and refused a roadside breath test.

He then fled on foot before being released, but police had already confirmed his identity, making it unnecessary to chase him. When officers caught up with him later that day he received a 90-day driving prohibition, various violation tickets and he faces a potential charge of Escape Lawful Custody.

There were 360 days of driving prohibitions handed out in total along with over $3,000 in fines.

All three vehicles were impounded for 30 days under the Immediate Roadside Prohibition program.

Mounties will be reporting the incident to the Street Racing Section of the Office of the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles, requesting an extension on the driving prohibitions and vehicle impounds.

According to Kelowna RCMP Const. Kris Clark, impaired driving remains the leading cause of criminal death in Canada and when combined with dangerous driving behaviours, the potential for deadly consequences multiplies exponentially.

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