Drunk Driving to Become Illegal in Philippines

The new bill is filed as House Bill 382 and seeks to declare driving while under the influence of alcohol or liquor a criminal act.

“The World Health Organization (WHO) and various studies showed that alcohol intake, depending on the level of intoxication, results in impairment which increases the likelihood of a crash since it produces poor judgment, decreased reaction time, lower vigilance and decreased visual acuity,” Arroyo says according to philstar.com.

In the Philippines, there are often news reports on tragic road accidents, and it has consistently remained one of the leading causes of deaths in the country. A significant percentage of these include driving under the influence of alcohol.

Arroyo, who’s son Camarines Sur Rep. Diosdado Arroyo helped to co-sign the bill, cites Philippine statistics that shows an increase of 6.2 percent in 2009 in alcohol-related accidents nationwide resulting in death, physical injuries, and damage of properties.

The Government in Philippines has already enacted the “Prpublic Act 4136” – or the “Land Transportation and Traffic Code”, but the law is insufficient in defining what constitutes drunk driving.

The new bill will instead give a much clearer line of when there is a case of drunk driving, saying that a “person can be charged with drunk driving when operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated with alcohol by reason of which the driver’s mental and motor skills are impaired, or when the driver’s blood alcohol concentration level is 0.06 or more,” says philstar.com.

There will also be a course of instruction with information on driving and safety matters provided for every applicant for a driver’s license, like there will be fines from P5,000 to P7,000 and suspensions or even automatic revocations of driver’s licenses when something happens.

Furthermore, all drivers involved in vehicular accidents resulting to loss of lives or physical injuries of serious nature shall be subjected to chemical tests to determine the presence and concentration of alcohol, says philstar.com.

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