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Operation Red Nose busy on New Year’s Eve, has great year overall

Operation Red Nose wrapped up its 2018 campaign delivering 157 safe rides home on New Year’s Eve with the help of 87 volunteers, including 24 road teams.

Combined with the 802 rides already provided in the previous four weekends of the holiday season, a total of 959 rides were delivered by 197 volunteers in 2018.

“We’re quite happy with how New Year’s Eve unfolded,” said Andrea Johnson, Operation Red Nose spokesperson. “The longest wait times were one hour at most and our teams managed to keep up with the demand for rides we experienced from midnight to 3 a.m. We appreciate the patience of everyone who called us for a ride as our volunteer teams navigated their way through the snowy weather.”

Operation Red Nose, organized by the Rotary Club of Prince George Nechako in partnership with ICBC and the Prince George RCMP, allows party-goers to not only get themselves home safely, but their vehicles too during the holiday season for those who do not feel fit to drive.

All donations received from clients go directly towards youth and amateur sport organizations in Prince George.

The 959-ride total ranks among their fifth-best season in the organization’s 21-year history.

“We really could not have done this without the support of all of our volunteers, some of whom were with us all nine nights, our clients, our partners and our sponsors,” said Johnson. “We really appreciate their dedication.”

Provincially, Prince George is one of 11 communities in B.C. who offers the service, where 3,166 volunteers drove 5,204 motorists who reached out for a safe ride home. Kamloops gave the most rides home in the province with 1,313, followed by Prince George’s 959. Chilliwack was third with 532 rides.

Nationally, 73,150 Canadian motorists got home safely between Nov. 30 and Dec. 31.