Drinkaware welcomes the announcement by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Shane Ross TD, that new drink driving provisions of the Road Traffic (Amendment) Act 2018 came into effect at one minute after midnight on October 26. These provisions will ensure that all drink-drivers, without exception, will receive an automatic three-month driving disqualification. They remove the concession in previous legislation by which some drink drivers have been able to receive penalty points instead of a disqualification.
Drinkaware has supported Minister Ross and the proposed changes to the Road Traffic (Amendment) Act as the legislation progressed through the Oireachtas. It is clear that drink driving remains an issue in Ireland, with the latest RSA statistics showing that alcohol is a factor in 39% of all driver fatalties. However, this new law makes it clear that this behaviour is no longer acceptable and will not be tolerated. We would encourage all road users to recognise the new law as a step forward in ensuring safety on Irish roads and in our communities.
A survey of 1,000 adults conducted by Drinkaware in June 2017 showed that there was a high level of awareness of the dangers of drink driving among adults, yet some continued to get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol, despite knowing the risks. The survey found that:
- 1 in 10 adults surveyed had driven after consuming alcohol in the previous 12 months
- 88% of adults agree that any amount of alcohol impairs driving ability
- 70% of adults who admitted to drink-driving agree that any amount of alcohol impairs the ability to drive.
Drinkaware has consistently communicated the message of the dangers of drink-driving through campaigns such as the ‘Morning After’ campaign, which highlights the potential dangers of driving the morning after a night of drinking.