Alcohol lock is ‘disproportionate’: high court

three glasses of white wine on black backgroundCentral driving test organisation CBR may no longer compel drunk drivers to have an alcohol lock fitted in their cars.

The ruling was made on Wednesday by a division of the high court which said compelling over the limit drivers to use an alcohol lock is ‘disproportionately’ severe because it does not take ‘personal circumstances’ sufficiently into account, the NRC reports.

Yesterday, the high court said drunk drivers with an alcohol lock fitted to their cars should not be prosecuted in court as well, because this amounted to a double punishment.

Wednesday’s ruling said the infrastructure minister did not ‘properly consider the possible far-reaching results of the alcohol lock’. The ruling does not give the CBR room to take into consideration the effect it may have on an individual, and this leads to inequality and unfairness, the court said.

The court also said the cost of the alcohol lock is too high at €5,000 over the two year period it must be used. The result is that some drunk drivers cannot afford it, which means losing their licence for five years.

The ruling is not retroactive and will not affect drunk drivers already using the alcohol lock.

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