Tougher Penalties to Keep Victorians Safe on our Roads

02 November 2017

Drink drivers are twice as likely to be involved in a crash, that’s why we’ve proposed new driver safety reforms to keep Victorians safe, and bring tougher penalties against dangerous drink drivers. 

Every year, up to 3,000 full licence holders are caught drink-driving with a blood alcohol content (BAC) between 0.05 and 0.07. 

Due to this, the proposed reforms will see first time drink driver offenders have their licences cancelled immediately and disqualified from driving for three months. 

Lower level drink-driving is a serious road safety issue and its effects are clear – last year drink-driving contributed to 23 per cent of road deaths, and 17.5 per cent of those killed had an illicit stimulant in their system.

Every driver over 0.05 will be required to have an alcohol interlock fitted to their vehicle for six months and all drink-drivers will have to complete a new behaviour change program before being relicensed.

VicRoads Director of Road User and Vehicle Access, Robyn Seymour, said that the focus of the reforms was to not only protect the Victorian community, but also produce an environment to stop repeat offenders. 

“Through research, we’ve found that licence disqualifications can cut instances of repeat drink-driving by 70 per cent and reduce crashes by 79 per cent. Installing alcohol interlocks slashes repeat drink-driving by 63 per cent.” Ms Seymour said. 

 “The behaviour change program is an additional measure to ensure we take proactive action to stop repeat drink driving in the future.”

Expanding mandatory licence bans and alcohol interlocks to all drink-drivers ensures we continue to lead the nation in stamping out this dangerous behaviour on our roads.

As part of the reforms introduced to the parliament this week, Victoria Police will also be given greater ability to immediately impound vehicles for a range of dangerous driving behaviours. 

There will be tougher penalties for excessive speeding, unlicensed driving and employing an unlicensed driver in a driving role to help protect the entire community. 

License disqualifications will also be doubled from three to six months for those caught driving under the influence of drugs. Court penalties and penalties for repeat offences also double. 

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