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“Alcohol interlocks” could be used to reduce drink driving reoffending rates, advisory council reveals

“Alcohol interlocks” could be used to reduce drink driving reoffending rates across the UK, a government advisory body has suggested.

The report comes after research revealed that more than 100,000 drink driving offences had been committed by someone with a previous drink or drug driving offence since 2010.

However, the true number of cases could be much higher, as this data only counts offences that have gone before the courts.

Under the proposed scheme, alcohol interlocks, also known as “alcolocks”, could be used to prevent driving with excess alcohol by requiring the driver to blow into an in-car breathalyser before starting the ignition.

Pilot schemes across Europe, New Zealand, the US, and Canada have shown that alcohol interlocks are “much more effective” than disqualification at reducing reoffending – known as recidivism.

The Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS), who suggested the programme, said interlocks could complement existing rehabilitation measures, such as the UK drink drive rehabilitation course, to reduce overall reoffending rates across the UK.

Commenting on the recommendation, David Davies, Executive Director of the PACTS, said: “We were shocked to find that one in six drink driving offences is committed by someone previously convicted. Since 2010, this amounts to over 100,000 offences – each of which is highly dangerous for the driver and other road users. Clearly the current system is not adequate.

“A number of other countries have introduced alcohol interlocks to prevent repeat drink driving and to bring down the number of deaths and injuries that result. Alcohol interlocks have proved highly effective. PACTS is calling on the government to give UK courts the powers to impose them without delay.”

Click here to access the full report.

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