The drunk-driving awareness campaign, which saw the re-introduction of Alcoblow breathalysers over the festive season, is bearing fruits and road accidents have reduced, Transport Cabinet Secretary Michael Kamau has said.
Mr Kamau said there was an indication that the number of those who have died in road accidents was reducing compared to last year when the gadgets were not in use.
The cabinet secretary disclosed that 141 people had perished in accidents between January 1 and 14 compared to 203 within the same period last year. “The number is still high but at least there are signs it has gone down by 62.
We want to bring it down drastically,” he said after receiving two enhanced models of breathalysers donated by a UK company, Pottermark Enterprises. Kamau said another set of breathalysers, which are enhanced models of the Alcoblow currently being used, would be received next week.
The new gadgets have disposable mouthpieces. Traffic officers will be able to type in details of drivers being tested, with the gadgets producing two printouts, one for the driver and another to be retained by the officers to be produced in court as evidence in cases of drunk driving.
“Those who drink and drive must be very afraid now. We will distribute these gadgets to different parts of the country to ensure that the campaign is effective,” he said. “During the campaigns, the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) was able to detect over 5,000 cases of non-compliance involving private and public service vehicles.
The owners were either penalised or advised to ensure compliance with traffic laws before being allowed to resume operations,” Kamau told a Press conference in Nairobi. He added that NTSA, working closely with traffic police, was able to arrest over 150 motorists both in Nairobi and Mombasa, who were found driving while drunk.
On the issue of night travel, the CS insisted that there has not been any ban, as those who comply with the ministry’s requirements would be allowed to operate at night.
He said Saccos and matatu companies should apply for the new licences in order to resume normal operations.
Source: Standard Digital News