Expect more roadblocks and police checkpoints ahead of South Africa’s new drunk driving law

 ·29 Jan 2020

South African motorists should expect additional roadblocks and police checkpoints as the country prepares to introduce its new drunk driving legislation.

On Friday (24 January), Transport minister Fikile Mbalula announced that his department will introduce a 0% legal blood-alcohol limit, meaning that drivers will not be allowed to drink alcohol and drive at all.

This new restriction will work alongside the new Aarto Act which will introduce South Africa long-awaited demerit system which could see drivers lose their licenses if they accumulate enough traffic fines.

In an interview with Cape Talk, Dr Leana Olivier, chief executive of the Foundation for Alcohol Related Research (FARR), said that new law will help put an end to the confusion around the legal blood-alcohol limit.

“At the moment there is a lot of confusion about the legal alcohol limit for drivers in South Africa – especially as it differs for professional drivers and normal drivers.

“A zero-tolerance limit in a country where we have such a major problem with driving under the influence is probably the way to go.”

Olivier added that a key part of the proposed legislation is that it is enforced correctly.

“According to the Transport minister (Mbalula), this is going to be properly enforced from June 2020. Serious measures will be put in place including roadblocks and police check-in points in certain sections which still need to be announced.

“It is going to be enforced so the general public needs to take note of this legislation,” she said.

Read: Ramaphosa calls for ‘responsibility’ as South Africa prepares for new demerit and drunk-driving laws

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