The government has announced tougher measures on drink-driving in order to improve road safety. This means that drink drivers will face justice much faster than previously because of new roadside breathalyser technology that will allow police to gather on-the-spot proof.
The new technology allows police to breathalyse people on the road-side, instantly targeting offenders. It is expected police forces throughout the UK will be able to use the device by summer 2020. The instant test means offenders will not need to be taken back to a police station to obtain evidence as is currently the case.
Previously, those who were only slightly over the limit and chose to have a test at the police station had had time to allow their alcohol to wear off during the car journey to the station. This allowed offenders to get away with the crime and also wasted police time.
In order to develop the technology, the government is committing £350,000 for a competition which will see companies bring the new mobile breathalyser to market.
Roads Minister Jesse Norman said: “The drink drive limit has helped to give us one of the safest road networks in the world but there is always more we can do. This new mobile breathalyser technology will enable the police to enforce the alcohol more rigorously limit on those who still choose to drive after drinking, putting others at risk.”
In 2015, deaths associated with drink-driving were at an all-time low. In 2016, more than 460,000 people undertook breath tests, with almost 59,000 testing positively or refusing a test.