Drink-driving and disqualification

Sir, – Minister for Transport Shane Ross deserves credit and support for his efforts to introduce an automatic disqualification for any driver found to be over the legal alcohol limit.

From what I have heard, the latest evidence is on his side of the argument.

Saving lives and dramatically improving road safety requires a zero-tolerance attitude to drink-driving. Attitudes have changed but much more needs to be done if we are going to eradicate this problem in Ireland.

Frankly, I would have thought that Shane Ross’s proposals require a bit more consideration from both his Government colleagues and from the leading opposition party.


Road safety should be above and beyond party politics and requires an all-party response with all-party backing.

The improvements made on roads safety in the past came from a united political response. It would be beyond belief that a free vote, as suggested by Shane Ross, should be necessary for members of the Oireachtas to do the right thing.

Ireland ranks among the highest alcohol consuming countries within the European Union.

Over 150 people are arrested on suspicion of drink-driving every week.

A total of 188 people lost their lives on Irish roads last year as a direct result of drink driving, which was an increase of 26 on the previous year.

Of course Garda enforcement and additional resources are central, and after progress made some years ago, we are now going in the wrong direction, unfortunately.

Other European countries are considering the installation of Alcolock Interlocks, a device which prevents drivers starting their car engines if they are above a certain limit.

The message must be understood. If you drink and you’re caught, you’re off the road. – Yours, etc,


Fine Gael,

Dublin Constituency.