More drink driv­ers to face in­ter­lock from tough laws

Gatton Star - - NEWS - — Do­minic El­some

DRINK driv­ers will face a tough new crack down on their dan­ger­ous be­hav­iour, with new laws pass­ing par­lia­ment last week.

Un­der the changes the al­co­hol in­ter­lock pro­gram, will be ex­panded to ap­ply to mid-range drink driv­ers caught with a blood al­co­hol level of be­tween 0.10 and 0.149.

The in­ter­locker pro­gram re­quires sen­tenced drink driv­ers to un­lock their cars by pass­ing a breath test on a de­vice in­stalled in their ve­hi­cle.

Lai­d­ley po­lice of­fi­cer in charge Se­nior Sergeant Regan Dra­heim said while drink driv­ing of­fences in the re­gion were “pre­dom­i­nately low-range”, the change was wel­come.

“Any de­ter­rent for drink driv­ing is pos­i­tive,” Snr Sgt Dra­heim said.

He said the in­ter­locker pro­gram helped to pre­vent re­peat of­fences.

“It makes peo­ple think twice about their ac­tions, even af­ter the in­ter­lock pe­riod has fin­ished,” he said.

Other changes in­clude re­quir­ing all drink driv­ing of­fend­ers to com­plete an ed­u­ca­tion in­ter­ven­tion pro­gram be­fore they can reap­ply for their driver li­cence.

With drink driv­ing ac­count­ing for a quar­ter of Queens­land’s road toll, Trans­port and Main Roads Min­is­ter Mark Bai­ley said the tougher laws would send a strong mes­sage to driv­ers who can’t sep­a­rate driv­ing from drink­ing.

“Last year, 63 peo­ple died on Queens­land roads be­cause of drink driv­ers. The year be­fore it was 43 peo­ple,” Mr Bai­ley said.

“This is un­ac­cept­able. We know mid-range drink driv­ers ac­count for more than a quar­ter of all drink driv­ing of­fend­ers and have a crash risk 20 times greater than some­one who hasn’t had a drink.”

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