The Portage la Prairie RCMP is suggesting you think before you drink or consume cannabis following a massive uptick in citizens driving impaired during the last week of October.

The RCMP says between October 24th and October 30th, the detachment either criminally charged or issued a provincial driving prohibition to 12 individuals.

Constable Larry Neufeld says that Portage usually stops about one to three impaired drivers a week, and to see the number for the last week of October rise so much is unacceptable.

"We literally should be seeing zero. There is no reason for people to get behind the wheel and a lot of these calls are these are individuals that we located last week were due to people calling in and providing us information."

Neufeld states that this is a disappointing fact, especially with all the publications around making sure the public is reminded never to drive impaired.

"We are still seeing a great number of these individuals climbing behind these big weapons, really, because they're are thousands of pounds of steel travelling down the highway, and it can cause a great deal of damage to people and property."

The Constable says the RCMP stresses that people must consider the consequences before getting behind the wheel after drinking or consuming drugs such as cannabis.

"Please use whatever services that are available to get home safely," continues Neufeld. "If you are consuming alcohol, the holiday season is coming up in another month in a bit, and a lot of parties happen at that time, so please plan ahead."

Impaired driving charges can cost upwards of $1,000 and a year of license suspension for first-time offenders, and for those charged more than once, that can result in serious jail time.