Surge in drink and drive cases post lockdown
Drink and drive is on a rise after the reopening of bars and pubs.
Pune: The number of drink and drive cases across different divisions in Pune, has increased post the lockdown. Traffic police had lodged 355 drink and drive cases between January and March. However, post lockdown between September and November the cases have increased to 572.
Sudhir Heremanth, Traffic inspector, Pune said that they have kept nakabhandi at different points to check and mainly they have done it outside restaurants and bars. ‘’Reopening of restaurants and bars is one of the main reasons for the increase in the number of cases,’’ He added
Gaurav Rai a commuter says ‘’When things started opening up my friends and I started going out to eat and drink more overtly and yes going out with friends to drink is always fun.’’
The Pune traffic police have not reported any drink driving cases since April, when the lockdown had been implemented which in turn resulted in closure of bars and restaurants. Last year, six traffic divisions – Koregaon Park, Wanowrie, Airport, Hadapsar, Warje and Bharati Vidyapeeth emerged at the top with the highest number of drink driving cases between January 1, 2019 and December 22, 2019. As many as 13,239 cases have been registered in 2019 in all the 24 traffic divisions under Pune police commissionerate. The highest number of cases, – 2,702 – had been registered in April 2019.
The city traffic police had booked offenders after they were found driving under the influence of alcohol through various methods, like breath analyzing tests, nakabandi at various spots and surprise checks outside pubs and hotels. In a drive launched by the traffic police, drivers of heavy vehicles were also checked. Action was taken against offenders under relevant sections of the Maharashtra Motor Vehicles Act, which states that alcohol content legal limit is 0.03 percent to 30 micro liters in 100 ml blood.
Experts say no strict action has been taken since the covid outbreak. Mr. Anmol Tupe, Road Safety Officer says ‘’we are working on to give more awareness about the menace of drink and drive and I think along with the awareness implementation of stricter laws is needed.’’
Keywords; Drink and drive, alcohol, police, Pune, Traffic, breathalyzer