Cape plans booze blitz - watch out!

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Copy of ca p4 disposable breathalyser done

Independent Newspapers

Disposable Breathalysers have yellow crystals which turn green in the presence of alcohol. Picture: Matthew Jordaan

We’ll show no mercy – that’s the message from city traffic authorities to partying matrics caught driving drunk.

Matrics caught driving under the influence would be arrested, traffic services spokeswoman Maxine Jordaan warned yesterday.

“They will have to face the consequences. We will be out there setting up roadblocks, day and night.”

On Monday the city announced that extra-vigilant policing would be deployed to Camps Bay, Clifton, Blaauwberg, Strandfontein, Mnandi, Strand and Gordon’s Bay.

In Hermanus, municipal officials said they would keep a close eye on the Onrus campsite.

Jordaan said matrics deserved a good party after their final exams, but should do so responsibly.

drunk drivers

Authorities will be keeping a sharp eye on end-of-year matric parties such as those in Plettenberg Bay. Picture: David Ritchie

Independent Newspapers

The city advised matrics to ensure they had safe transport to and from “end-of-exam” parties and events.

“The city’s traffic services will be out in full force to ensure that everyone obeys the rules of the road. Motorists caught drinking and driving or committing serious moving violations will be fined,” said the city.

“We are appealing to all matriculants and others involved in this weekend’s celebrations to behave in a responsible manner, adhere to the rules of the road and drive safely.”

TEST YOURSELF

Meanwhile, the provincial government, city and police – all of which have promised an extra-heavy crackdown on drunk drivers – have advised drivers to test themselves before taking the wheel.

The Cape Argus today publishes the latest “Name & Shame” list of motorists convicted of disregarding the drinking and driving laws – as various authorities announced their plans.

Provincial Traffic Services has been issued with disposable Breathalysers to hand out to motorists at roadblocks over the entire festive season, starting this week. It will use its own testing devices, and encourages motorists to use the disposable Breathalysers on their next night out with friends or family, before they get behind the wheel.

Provincial Community Safety MEC Dan Plato’s office said: “An average of 4500-6000 motorists are tested every weekend by Western Cape Traffic Services and 43 000 Breathalysers will also be distributed with the December edition of the Western Cape government’s Better Together magazine.

“All Western Cape provincial government employees receive a copy, and they will be available at our walk-in centres, hospitals and district offices for the public,” said spokesman Greg Wagner.

He explained that the programme’s reasoning was in support of a “shift towards a ‘whole of society’ approach towards improving safety, and living our motto of ‘Better Together’.”

“We can provide safe and reliable roads, but we need the public to act responsibly while using them. The disposable Breathalysers are a tool towards achieving this. By empowering the public to take responsibility for their actions and test themselves after they’ve been drinking they can make an active contribution by not driving if they are over the limit and ensure the roads in the Western Cape remain safe,” Wagner said.

Wagner quoted Plato saying: “Policymakers in all spheres of government have recognised the limitations of a law enforcement model. They have taken important steps to place a bigger focus on preventing crime, rather than just reacting to it.”

Citizens’ responsibility was the next step.

FREE SAFETY CHECKS

The City of Cape Town is offering to check motorists’ vehicles for free – to ensure they are roadworthy before holidaymakers head off this summer.

Free basic vehicle safety checks will be on offer at traffic offices at Bellville, Kuils River, Brackenfell, Hillstar, Goodwood and Durbanville from 10am-2pm each working day until December 14.

Vehicle checkpoints and speed checks are to be set up in the vicinity of various public transport interchanges – including Joe Gqabi, Bellville/Parc Du Cap, Mfuleni, Langa, Dunoon, Cape Town Station – where taxis and buses will also be examined.

“The public are requested to report any life or property-threatening emergency (including medical, crime, fire and traffic) to the 107 emergency number from a Telkom line. Cellphone users need to dial 021 480- 7700,” the city’s officials advised. -Cape Argus


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