Labour Launches Blood Alcohol Bill


Labour Transport spokesperson Darren Hughes has put forward a member’s bill aimed at lowering the blood alcohol limit for drivers because he says the government is “dithering on the issue.”

He said that transport minister Steven Joyce supports lowering the limit from .08 to .05g of alcohol per 100ml of blood, “but his colleagues lack the courage to support him.”

Hughes’ Land Transport (Safer Alcohol Levels for Driving) Amendment Bill,  included in today’s parliamentary ballot, was designed to “give them that courage so that they do the right and sensible thing.”

Darren Hughes said his Bill would also lower the current breath alcohol limit from 400 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath to 250.

“The Law Commission’s wide-ranging report on alcohol left no doubt that blood alcohol limits ‘must come down’,” Darren Hughes said. “Steven Joyce clearly agreed when he said last year that legal alcohol limits for drivers were ‘just ridiculous’. Steven Joyce is already travelling in the same vehicle as Labour on this issue. There’s room inside for his colleagues as well.

“National doesn’t like doing anything without a poll to tell them what their ‘convictions’ should be, but I am sure most of them know in their hearts that their decision to delay a decision for two years will cost lives,” Darren Hughes said.

“National can save those lives by working alongside Labour. My Bill is designed to persuade them enough Kiwis have already been killed to provide all the evidence anyone needs.”




  1. karl says:

    Too much grandstanding by Labour for National to swallow that bill, despite the inept attempt to salve SJ’s pride by blaming the others. I am afraid we will have to bear up for at least another two years.

    Wonder though whether then, we get a research report from which we can extrapolate the data to say “Steven Joyce’s decision back in 2010 has now been shown to have killed, say, 6 people”.

    [No, I am not exactly neutral on this matter]

  2. karl says:

    Interesting to hear that John Key is now dangling the opportunity for a conscience vote on this bill in front of the MPs…


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