Drink-drivers: Enough is enough

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In less than a month 26 people in this community have been given convictions for drink-driving.

Another three were charged over the weekend – one allegedly had a breath-alcohol level of 1267mcg.

The legal limit is 250mcg, so the 25-year-old man stopped on Frankton Road just after 11.30pm on Saturday was more than five times the limit.

It beggars belief.

In a recent sitting of Queenstown’s court, judge Bernadette Farnan called for overseas drivers to sign a declaration entering New Zealand, to say they’re aware of our drink-drive laws.

Here’s the thing, though. A good percentage of our drink-drivers are either New Zealanders – or they’ve been living here long enough to know better.

According to police the 25-year-old and a 19-year-old stopped on Lake Esplanade about midnight on Friday both live here.

The teenager was allegedly driving with a breath alcohol level of 1007mcg.

What’s staggering about that is there’s a zero limit if you’re under 20.

Put simply, you can’t have a single drink before you get behind the wheel.

Yet he was, allegedly, just over four times the legal limit for adults.

Sittings of Queens-town’s court have largely been taken over by drink-driving appearances.

That’s probably a combination of two things – an ever-increasing population and good policing.

And still people don’t get it.

There seems to be a concerning mindset the worst thing that happens is you’ll get caught.

In my humble opinion, there could not be a better outcome.

The worst-case scenario is killing someone who was doing everything right because, with a skin-full of booze and an addled brain, you thought driving was a good idea.

And having to live with that for the rest of your life.

As a community, maybe it’s time we take a stand to protect ourselves, our families and our friends.

Don’t let your mates drive after they’ve been drinking. And if you have to ask yourself if you’re okay to drive, just get a taxi.

A fare’s far cheaper than a funeral.

ed@scene.co.nz