HoS continues wonky jihad by attacking government

The Herald on Sunday continues their wonky jihad on drunk driving by attacking the government.

New Zealanders are dying and being seriously injured in crashes that could have been avoided with a lower drink-drive limit.

The Government has refused to move on a lower blood alcohol limit until it has proof it would make a difference – but the whole time that evidence has been available from the Ministry of Transport and Cabinet refuses to consider it.

Statistics obtained by the Herald on Sunday under the Official Information Act show in the last four years 20 people have been killed in road accidents involving drinking drivers just below the legal limit.

Another 281 people have been seriously injured in crashes where a drink-driver was also tested and found to be just under the limit.

That is all well and good, but their hypothesis is flawed. If the stats are as they say..and since they haven’t released them then we can’t know for sure, that these people died with a blood alcohol level of just under the current limit, then they would still be dead if the limit was reduced..except now they would have been over it.

To blame the government for poor decision making and driving skills of drunk drivers is pathetic.

The Herald on Sunday cannot claim that those 20 people would have still been alive if the limit had been lowered.


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  • Pissedoffyouth

    Wrong, Cam.

    Remember, banning smacking stopped kids getting killed, didn’t it?

  • Doug

    The Reporter should be a Labour Politician, with thinking like that. She would fit in well and would make the front Bench at the next Election no problem.

  • Mitch82

    I still haven’t heard anyone come up with a decent reason why we have limits here at all. In my opinion it should be a 0mcg limit across the board.

    • Pissedoffyouth

      Ever popped into Cadrona Hotel for a quiet cold one when going past? Ever had a wine tasting? Ever gotten on this piss the night before and gone to drive home the next afternoon when you might have a small amount left in your system?

      • Mitch82

        Sober drivers, taxis, hell most local pubs even have their own pickup/drop off service.

        Beats being just impaired enough to swerve across the road on the morning after, or after a cold one at the Cardrona, and taking out a family in the oncoming car.

        • Pissedoffyouth

          Yeah I know, i know.

          The ones who do the most damage are always the ones who blow way over the limit, a zero limits not going to change that behavior.

          • Gazzaw

            I’m not concerned about any of that POY. Booze impairs your abilities and it gives me and my passengers the best chance of avoiding an accident if I am 100% sober. If I encounter a really pissed driver I have a far better chance of taking avoiding action if I have 100% control of my faculties (that’s 100%, not 95% or even 98%).

          • Mitch82

            No, they’re not. The completely intoxicated are more likely to crash, but a crash is a crash. Particularly if you’re doing your regular 105 km/h on the highway because ‘I’m right, I’ve only had one beer’.

            As far as I know, we have a zero tolerance approach to driving stoned, yet studies have shown that it’s safer driving on marijuana than weed. That falls perfectly in line with the Government’s ‘I Don’t Give A Fuck’ Policy of road safety.

          • Pissedoffyouth

            I find it so much harder to drive stoned then after a single beer.

            And to be honest I’d rather have the guy coming towards me to be as sober as possible, but would prefer the 1 beer over some guy who just choked back a bucket ten minutes before

        • Dion

          If someone swerves in front of an oncoming car after one beer it’s not drink driving it’s a murder-suicide.

      • Gazzaw

        Yes to all three POY but I should not have been driving. I am no wowser believe me but a line has to be drawn in the sand and I’m with Mitch at zero tolerance.

        • GregM

          Yep I’m the same Gazzaw, won’t drive at all after drinking, not even one.

          There still needs to be a limit,so people don’t get pinged the day after a few Fanta’s with anything but zero in their system.
          Most drunks that kill themselves and unfortunately other innocents always seem to be at least twice the existing limit, lowering it from 80 to 50 isn’t going to make one jot of difference.

  • reality is that people who break the law should be punished AND SEEN TO BE PUNISHED. i know im quite capable of driving certainly after 4 drinks but i chose not to purely because my freedom to have a couple of wind downs after work has been slowly inch by inch step by step taken away from me. politics is in my house and in my pub. they want every fuckin dollar of mine and this is reflected in the way that booze is taxed and the way people are punished.

  • “To blame the government for poor decision making and driving skills of drunk drivers is pathetic.

    The Herald on Sunday cannot claim that those 20 people would have still been alive if the limit had been lowered.”

    As we see on this blog every day. Some people are figuratively dying to literally kill themselves no matter what the obstacles in their way.

  • If someone comes thru a compulsory stop at speed, with no Alcohol in their system and wipes a car driven by someone, who is over the limit, who is at fault? I certainly do not suggest the limit should be raised, but would this accident be classed as caused by excess alcohol? No doubt it would.

    • Bunswalla

      If someone fails to stop or give way and wipes out a car driven by someone over the limit, you could make a reasonable argument that, had the nit-at-fault driver been 100% sober, they might have had a chance to take evasive action. The fact they were over the limit means their reaction time and peripheral vision, ability to recognise and avoid potential hazards, was severely impaired. In that case I think it’s quite reasonable to report that alcohol played a part in the fatality.

  • rouppe

    I think the point about “just under the limit” is that these were law-abiding folk and they died. The assertion being that if the limit were reduced, these 20 would continue to be law abiding and have less alcohol, and (possibly) not have had the accident.

    Impossible to say without knowing the circumstances of each death, but that is the intent of the article.

    Disclaimer: I’m for keeping the limit as it is. As a bloke well into the 90’s kg’s I’d have to drink about 10 beers in 5 hours to get over the limit. I usually stop well before that because I get bored

  • Honcho

    What this change will achieve is making drink drive murderers who are driving at double the limit, now driving at triple the limit … I think harsher penalties for recidivist activity would be more effective, how many times is it reported about a drink driver who crashed and killed had multiple prior convictions? compulsary jail time for anyone caught a drink driving a second time would be a start.

  • Hagues

    “Statistics obtained by the Herald on Sunday under the Official
    Information Act show in the last four years 20 people have been killed
    in road accidents involving drinking drivers just below the legal limit.”

    And how many killed with in road accidents involving people just under a proposed lower limit, and how many with zero alcohol? If people are dying in accidents with zero alcohol what makes them think the alcohol is at fault when the drivers are within legal limits?

  • amerikiwi77

    Instead of drinking and driving, let’s encourage a “porting” culture as fewer people get hurt his way (you just end up looking asfoolish as HOS.