Channel NewsAsia - Sunday, December 28
SINGAPORE: A four—hour islandwide police blitz this festive season resulted in 18 motorists being arrested for drink—driving late Friday night.
From midnight, road blocks went up at Tampines, Defu Avenue 1, Dunman Road, Whitley Road and Fort Road.
One by one, motorists were stopped and asked for their identification numbers.
From 2am, a second set of road blocks went up along Neil Road, Tanjong Pagar, Maxwell Road, Kreta Ayer Road and Cantonment Road, to ringfence the cluster of entertainment outlets and drinking haunts in the vicinity.
Breathalyser tests were administered to 72 motorists. Eighteen failed the test and were arrested for drink—driving, bringing the number of drink drivers caught so far this year to 3,552.
Traffic Police’s Rachel Soh Seok Hoon said: "The purpose of this major exercise is because for the past 11 months, we have experienced very high number of drink—drivers."
All those arrested on Friday night were men between 28 and 60 years old. 21 other persons were also summoned for other traffic—related offences.
The legal limit in Singapore for drink—driving is 35 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millimetres of breath.
But it is not just about knowing the limit. If you have had a couple of drinks and get behind the wheel of a car, even though the alcohol content in your blood or breath does not go beyond the legal limit, you can still be charged with drink—driving if police find that you are unable to control the car properly.
In Singapore, those convicted of drink—driving will lose their licence for at least a year. In addition, first—time offenders can also be fined between $1,000 and $5,000 or jailed up to six months.
Repeat offenders face a mandatory jail term."
Law and order during the so-called festive time is important. People need to know that law and order does not become less stringent because it is the festive season! This is especially so for drink-drivers as a moment of merriness can result in death or permanent disability to human and damages to properties.
Lessons for me are:
1. if you drink, don't drive. If you must drink, know you limit. This one is risky as your limit may not be the same as the limit imposed by law and administered through the breathalyser test!;
2. if you are not the 'show-off type', it is unlikely that you will lose control of drinking. If you are the 'show-off type', my advice is do not tempt fate. Check your own ego and make a determination in your own mind that 'to be able to drink like a fish is NOTHING to brag about!'. It is the one who can hold his or he drink that is the admired ones! Also you can see that 'people who did this stupid drink-drive thing can ranged from as young as 28 to as old as 60!;
3. choose your friends who go to a festive drink session with you. You will need someone who is very strong-minded and can handle your ego! The truth is most 'show-off type' does not really like to have such friends around!! So, it has to be a conscious effort on your part to get 1 or 2 such friends. Friends who will stop you from doing the silly thing and stupid thing! Friends that you will be grateful for when disaster is averted!
It is 3 more days to the New Year Countdown. More merry making and, unfortunately, alcoholic beverages will be served and let's hope that the incidents of drink-drive accidents - fatal or otherwise - is kept to ZERO this year!!
Responsible drinking is a sign of a leader! Those who cannot hold their drinks are pigs!!