Save Lives – Support the Road Traffic Bill, urges Alcohol Action Ireland

Alcohol Action Ireland, the national charity for alcohol-related issues, is appealing to every member of the Dáil to save lives on Irish roads by supporting the Road Traffic Bill.

When passed, the Road Traffic Bill 2009 will lower the drink drive limit from 80mgs of alcohol per 100mls of blood to 50mgs, and to 20mgs for novice and professional drivers. The Bill also provides for compulsory alcohol testing at the scene of all road collisions where someone is injured.

Speaking in advance of the Dáil vote on the Road Traffic Bill, Alcohol Action Ireland Director Fiona Ryan said: “Once the drink drive limit is reduced, we will see a decrease in the number of deaths and injuries on our roads. We welcome the Minister for Transport Noel Dempsey’s courageous stance on the issue and we now urge each TD to vote in favour of the legislation and to listen to what the public – their constituents – want.   There is popular support for this legislation – two thirds of motorists surveyed in two independent polls supported a reduction in the drink drive limit.” [i]

Ms Ryan added that research shows that any amount of alcohol impairs driving and increases the risk of road collisions.

She said: “It was worth remembering that some 100 people have died on our roads so far this year and it is estimated that 1 in 3 road crashes in Ireland are alcohol related.”

Ms Ryan urged that the legislation be passed as soon as possible to ensure greater safety for all road users.


Editor’s Notes:
The Road Traffic Bill 2009 has now completed its passage through Dáil Eireann and Seanad Eireann and is due back before the Dáil on Wednesday, July 7.

For further information or comment contact:
Alcohol Action Ireland Communications Officer Cathy Gray (01) 878 0610/ 087 995 0186

[i] Millward Brown Lansdowne for Road Safety Authority and AA Motorists Panel Survey, both conducted in late 2009