No signs of intoxication: the traffic police will check all drivers for alcohol content

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In Russia, from January to November 2019, 13,835 accidents occurred due to drunk drivers (10.9% less than a year earlier) and another 3321 accidents caused by drivers who refused to check (-3.7%). In total, 3,760 people died and 23,620 participants were injured. Despite the recession, the share of such accidents remains quite high – 13% of the total number of accidents caused by the fault of drivers.

At the same time, the Russian Federation does not abandon the plan to reduce the mortality rate in road accidents: by 2024, it should be reduced by about three times. Now the decline is observed, but it is much slower. So, in the first 11 months of this year, 15,158 people died in road accidents, which is 8.6% less than in the same period of 2018.



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It is not surprising that authorities continue to think about how to reduce the number of those who drive while intoxicated. Now, the traffic police have the right to send for medical examination those motorists who have signs of intoxication. Among them: the smell of alcohol from the mouth, instability of the posture, impaired speech, a sharp change in the color of the skin of the face and behavior that does not correspond to the situation.

However, the Ministry of Internal Affairs proposes to change the rules for inspecting drivers. A new sign of intoxication may be the testimony of devices, according to which there are alcohol, drugs or psychotropic substances in the body of a motorist. As previously reported, rapid tests will help determine this symptom: we are talking about the use of an alcohol detector that analyzes the air exhaled by the driver (they have been used for a long time), and a new paper narcosis for the traffic police (analyzes saliva). As reported by “News”, Any stopped drivers will be tested, and not just those who find one or more of the first five signs of intoxication.


It is curious that a driver’s refusal from this rapid test will not entail legal consequences: that is, it will not be perceived as a “refusal of a medical examination”, which is punishable in the same way as drunk driving (for the first violation – a fine of 30 thousand rubles and deprivation of rights for a period of 1.5-2 years). Apparently, if the driver refuses the express test and has no signs of intoxication, the traffic police should just let him go. If they are, then the motorist will be offered to undergo a medical examination, and here the refusal will already entail prosecution.

Recall that now drivers are checked using a breathalyzer only in the presence of witnesses, and video recording and filling out the protocol is required. Apparently, according to the new rules, all this will not be necessary for the initial express test. The auto community fears that this will increase corruption risks among the traffic police.

In the summer of this year, Russia increased the punishment for “drunk” road accidents with victims: the maximum term of imprisonment for those responsible was increased from 9 to 15 years. Now this crime is equated to grave, which threatens drunk drivers with more stringent conditions in prison. In addition, for them, the procedure for parole will be complicated.

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