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Driver who passed out arrested

Feb 18 2012

An off-duty Nanaimo RCMP officer arrested a woman for being drunk after he saw her slumped over the steering wheel of her stationary van with the engine running.

The woman's foot on the brake was the only thing stopping the van from reversing precariously close to a pre-school as children were leaving, RCMP spokesman Const. Gary O'Brien said.

Cpl. Dean Muir and his wife were about to pick up their child from a pre-school at the Beban Park recreation centre Thursday when he saw the woman passed out. Muir initially thought the woman was ill so he called an ambulance. The door was locked and the windows were rolled up, but Muir roused the woman by shouting and pounding on the window.

She opened the door and Muir shut off the engine and took the keys. He then realized that she was drunk, O'Brien said.

RCMP officers arrested the 48-year-old Qualicum Beach resident, who gave a breath sample well over the legal limit.

O'Brien said if her foot had slipped off the brake, the car could have hit one of the 24 children leaving the pre-school.

The woman faces charges of impaired driving. She is also facing criminal charges in relation to an impaired driving incident in Qualicum Beach on Feb. 10.

kderosa@timescolonist.com

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