‘Alco-gate’ too late for drink-driver

Sunday Star-Times - - News - Chloe Ran­ford, Kelly Den­nett

A re­cidi­vist drink-driver granted a rare re­prieve by a judge is warn­ing oth­ers not to make the same mis­takes he has.

His plea comes as the Min­istry of Trans­port re­veals it’s watch­ing the pi­lot of a high-tech anti-drinkdriv­ing de­vice in Aus­tralia.

The min­istry is ‘‘pay­ing close at­ten­tion’’ to the re­sults of the trial, which in­volves in­tro­duc­ing a high-tech ‘‘boom’’ gate, called an alco-gate, at se­cret Mel­bourne lo­ca­tions. Driv­ers leav­ing carparks will be breathal­ysed by the tech­nol­ogy and the gates will open only if they’re un­der the limit.

The tech­nol­ogy was first tri­alled by Swe­den for driv­ers com­ing off fer­ries and Aus­tralia’s Na­tional Roads and Mo­torists As­so­ci­a­tion rec­om­mended the gates for high-risk events such as sports oc­ca­sions or fes­ti­vals.

The trans­port min­istry’s safety man­ager, Brent John­ston, said that as part of its new road safety strat­egy, due for pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion in April, it was in­ves­ti­gat­ing new tech­nolo­gies and was aware of the trial.

‘‘We are in­ter­ested in the re­sults, which we will pay close at­ten­tion to be­fore con­sid­er­ing whether this or sim­i­lar tech­nolo­gies could ben­e­fit New Zealand.’’

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