A rigorous crackdown on an unauthorized car rally has been carried out by the provincial police at Wasaga Beach, culminating in more than 250 charges throughout the weekend.
Disruptive operations began in earnest on Friday, as law enforcement sought to dismantle the illicit gathering, resulting in the issuance of 97 charges. The following day saw an escalation in policing action, with a further 160 charges proposed, as per details provided by the officers.
Constable Lindsay Griffin of the Ontario Provincial Police force detailed the breadth of offences. “There were licenses suspended, drivers navigating without licenses, and improper mufflers. Not to mention, several charges relating to violations of the Liquor License Act. This included drivers impaired by drug use,” he stated, highlighting the commitment to ensuring the safety and comfort of the area’s inhabitants and visitors.
Attempts to curb the reckless abandon that infamous car “takeovers” have previously imposed on Wasaga Beach’s neighbourhoods have emerged via this year’s H2OI weekend social media pages.
One participant, Devin Mackenzie, drove to Wasaga Beach for the rally. He pointed out that the drivers desired to express their hobby courteously, keen to “experience the creative designs and distinct personality that each vehicle represented, within a unified and respectful environment.” He added, “participants are dissuaded from disruptive and littering behaviors, hence only courteous and respectful behaviors have been witnessed so far, which was gratifying to see.”
The stern policing seems to have had a deterrence effect, driving the rallies to nearby towns like Collingwood and Stayner. However, even in these locations, only a sparse scattering of cars can be found gathering.
“Officers not only patrol within the town of Wasaga Beach, but also monitor the neighbouring areas, including Clearview township, Springwater township, and additional areas policed by the OPP,” added Constable Griffin.
The police stress that lawbreakers who manage to evade enforcement efforts may not have evaded justice altogether. Investigations will extend beyond the weekend, and any culprits identified may face charges at a later date.