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Latest survey strengthens case for ‘zero’ tolerance – Boylan

20 November, 2007

Sinn Féin Road Safety spokesperson, Cathal Boylan MLA commenting on a recent survey on alcohol and driving has said that it strengthens the case for a zero tolerance approach.

A recent survey by a company called AlcoSense has highlighted that drivers in Ireland, north and south, are among the biggest offenders when it comes to driving under the influence of alcohol, whether they realise it or not.

Mr Boylan said:

"Research shows that 49% of men and women in the north and 75% in the south have driven their vehicles while near or over the limit. Many admitted doing so consciously, but a vast number did so because they did not realise the drink drive limit or that they were still over the limit the next morning.

"80% of those surveyed did not know the legal limits for alcohol consumption. These results are shocking, and makes it even more clear that a zero tolerance approach to drink driving, as advocated by my party, is justified. After all, there can be no excuse at not knowing the limit if that limit is nil."

The MLA for Newry and South Armagh was speaking shortly after asking the Environment Minister if she had any evidence of the success of the televised Road Safety advertisements and if they reaching their target audience. Mr Boylan added:

"The Minister's response that it is difficult to gauge the sole, unique contribution to road safety of any strategy, including these adverts, but that DoE research shows that advertising is influential in improving driver attitudes sounded very weak.

"A lot of money is spent on these advertisements, you would think the department would follow up to take a comprehensive look to see if the strategy is effective or not." ENDS

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