Friday, 3 May 2013


Drink-drive rules involving the most serious offenders are to be
tightened up.

Under new regulations the most dangerous offenders will have to prove
they are no longer dependent on alcohol before they are allowed to get
back behind the wheel.

The new measures will also see those drink-drivers who obstruct the
police by refusing to allow their blood samples to be analysed being
treated the same as other high risk offenders.

Currently, all high risk offenders must pass a medical examination
before they can be issued with a driving licence following their
disqualification. However, drivers can start driving as soon as they
have applied for their licence and before they have taken and passed the
necessary medical.

But from June 1 the most dangerous drink-drivers will have to pass a
medical confirming they are no longer alcohol dependent at the end of
their disqualification and BEFORE they start driving.

Also, those offenders who refuse to allow their blood samples to be
analysed will also, from June 1,  only get their licence back following
disqualification if they pass the required medical.

Under the  High Risk Offender (HRO) scheme, drivers convicted of certain
serious drink/driving offences must have a medical investigation to
confirm that there are no on-going problems with the misuse of alcohol
before they can be issued with a licence.

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA is notified of such
offenders by the courts. Last year the DVLA was notified by the courts
of just over 50,000 drink-driving convictions.

Nearly 22,000 of those were classed as high risk offenders. Of those,
around 5,000 drivers either failed, or failed to attend, their medical.

Road Safety Minister Stephen Hammond said: "Drink-drivers are a menace
and it is right that we do everything we can to keep the most high risk
offenders off the road."

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