Wednesday, December 1, 2010

New Scotland Bill presents an opportunity to reset drink driving limits in Scotland, Holyrood should be bold and aim for zero tolerance or as close as

Dear All

Every so often a piece of legislation comes along that can make a real difference and can save lives.

Recently Labour MP Eric Joyce found out to his cost that drink driving is no laughing matter, losing his driving licence and being fined in a Court of Law.

With the publication of the new Scotland Bill, an opportunity is presented on changing the drink driving limits.

So, what should Holyrood do?

Like the smoking ban, there is need for a change to be bold and reset the limit to zero or as close to that benchmark as possible.

Zero tolerance is the correct way forward, if you want to drink then don’t use your vehicle, get a taxi, a bus, train, appointed a designated driver or phone a friend to pick you up or drop you off, options are available.

Safety experts will of course be in favour of a restting of the limits but such an issue would attract wide spread public support if the case is made vigorously and factually.

The new powers have been welcomed by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) in Scotland.

RoSPA road safety officer Kathleen Braidwood said:

"Although we believe the best option is for a lower limit to be applied across the UK, we strongly support the transfer of powers to Scotland so it can lower its drink-drive limit to 50 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood. We hope this would set an example that the rest of the UK might follow."

Drink driving is like a cancer, a person will go on and on doing it till it possibly kills them, and like cancer, the remedy has to be harsh because it is the right thing to do.

One in nine road deaths in Scotland involves someone who is over the current drink-drive limit, that means families robbed of fathers, mothers, sons or daughters in horrific circumstances.

What would you do to save a family member or member of the public in danger?

You would try and try again.

We need to convince Holyrood to have the courage to do what is right.

The drink driving limit must be heading a zero tolerance limit because life is too precious to waste and everyone has a duty to speak out.

Drink driving kills and ruins lives.

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University

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