Drink Driving – Towards Zero Tolerance

  • April 24, 2012

This report provides an overview of the drink driving situation in the European Union (Chapter 1) and measures taken at the EU level to curb drink driving deaths (Chapter 2). ETSC calls on Member States and the European Institutions to adopt a zero tolerance for drink driving. Other ETSC recommendations to Member States and the European Union are also included in Chapter 3.

Chapter 4 looks at countries’ progress in reducing road deaths attributed to drink driving between 2001 and 2010. Road deaths attributed to alcohol have been cut by 53% between 2001 and 2010 in these countries, while other road deaths decreased by 47%. Ireland achieved impressive reductions in cutting alcohol related deaths from 124 in 2003 to 48 in 2007. Slovakia cut drink driving deaths from 50 in 2001 to an average of 15 per year in 2008-2010. Latvia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Sweden, Slovenia, Lithuania, Germany, Belgium, Greece and Austria also reduced drink driving deaths faster than other road deaths.

Chapter 5 presents a case study of four European countries: the Czech Republic, Ireland, Norway and Sweden. Successes and shortcomings of drink driving policies are discussed with national experts from these four countries. The implementation of alcohol interlocks in Norway, the adoption of a lower BAC limit in Ireland or the effect of zero tolerance for drink driving in the Czech Republic and the impact of Vision Zero to support the fight against drink driving in Sweden are among the good practices implemented in those countries.