Dispelling drunk driving
It’s nearly that time of the year again as Christmas decorations fill the shops and people get ready for the festive season and New Year celebrations … But, unfortunately, joy won’t be the only emotion to come from the holidays, as road accidents will undoubtedly rise over this period … .
“It is no secret that drinking and driving is a major problem in South Africa,” David Lynch, director of Discover Nine, points out. “Our lack of stringent legislation, coupled with inadequate law enforcement, makes for a very sad story and ultimately does little to incentivise ‘driving dry’.”
Lynch decided to take action, however, and founded Discover Nine earlier this year. This company operates as the local dealer for Canadian-based Alcohol Countermeasure Systems (ACS). Its main product is the ACS Alcolock V3 – an alcohol interlock used in commercial applications.
This played a huge part in Lynch’s decision to go with ACS as he was particularly interested in approaching commercial fleets. “Fleet owners’ commitment to safety is more pervasive than that of a single member of the public, so we wanted a unit specifically designed for commercial applications,” says Lynch.
The Alcolock lines of alcohol interlock devices are used worldwide to promote safe driving in truck, bus and taxi fleets as well as in earth moving equipment. The V3 unit, which is extensively used in Europe, Canada and the United States, can withstand vibration, dirt, dust, humidity and extreme temperatures.
So it is perfectly suited to South African conditions and can assist in lowering accidents on our roads. “The two main killers on the roads are speed and alcohol. And the two often go hand-in-hand. One way to reduce the carnage is to enforce better driving behaviour where we can,” says Lynch.
“Vehicle tracking companies have made great strides in assisting fleet owners to make sure drivers of large commercial vehicles obey the speed limit, and Discover Nine wants to make similar strides to ensure that the drivers of commercial vehicles are not impaired at any point during their journey.”
He adds that, with buy-in from commercial fleet operators, the awareness around the severity of drinking and driving will filter down to the general public. “Hopefully, one day we will have a legal system that supports a drinking and driving rehabilitation programme for convicted drunk drivers – this will be a major lifesaver and will make our roads safer for all who use them,” says Lynch.
But, until then, Discover Nine can help to ensure that drunk drivers are kept off of our roads.