158 held for drink driving in KL in January

Police say they welcome the move for more severe penalties for those found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 158 individuals were arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol here in January.

Kuala Lumpur Traffic and Investigation Department head Zulkefly Yahya said 118 have been charged and 40 are under investigation.

“Drink driving often happens after midnight. The death toll due to alcohol intoxication last year was just one while in 2018, there were three cases,” he told Bernama.

Zulkefly urged entertainment outlet owners to buy the Screening Device II (SDII) so customers can check their alcohol levels.

“If a person’s alcohol content level exceeds the permitted level, the owner of the premises may take the initiative and advise them not to drive,” he said.

He said the SDII was already being used overseas.

Asked about the government’s proposal to amend the laws on drink driving, driving under the influence of drugs and reckless driving, Zulkefly said the police welcomed the proposal.

He said that currently, offenders charged under Section 44 the Road Transport Act 1987 faced a jail term of three to 10 years and a fine of between RM8, 000 and RM20,000.

On Jan 29, Transport Minister Loke Siew Fook said the government had agreed to amend the law to impose more severe penalties on those found guilty of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, and those driving dangerously and causing death.

Loke said his ministry would initiate discussions with stakeholders including the police, the attorney-general and related agencies to enable the amendment to be brought to Parliament as early as July.