Legislation: Legal advisers warn against 0% alcohol driving limit

Parliamentary legal advisers have recommended that government scrap its proposal to introduce a zero-tolerance drunk driving rule. A Business Tech report says in a presentation to Parliament’s Portfolio Committee on Transport, the legal advisers said they were not convinced by the government’s proposal to decrease the alcohol percentage on a driver’s blood to 0% through the National Road Traffic Amendment Bill. Included in the Bill is an amendment of section 65 of the Road Traffic Act which effectively changes the legal blood alcohol content limit for drivers from 0.05g/100ml to 0.00g/100ml, and the breath alcohol concentration from 0.24g/1 000ml also to zero. It said the Department of Transport’s own argument for the provision were outweighed by the many public submissions which criticized the proposal. The introduction of a zero-tolerance drink driving rule in SA has faced criticism from civil society groups who warn that drivers can show higher blood alcohol levels after taking some medications or eating certain food groups, leading to false positives.

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