Alcohol-related driving offences, crashes, and traffic policing strategies in Zhejiang Province, China

Fleiter, Judy J., Guan, Manquan, Xu, Cheng, Ding, Jingyan, & Watson, Barry C. (2013) Alcohol-related driving offences, crashes, and traffic policing strategies in Zhejiang Province, China. In 20th International Council on Alcohol, Drugs and Traffic Safety Conference, 25-28 August 2013, Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

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Abstract

Context

Alcohol-related traffic offences and associated trauma have attracted attention in China in recent years, culminating in changes to national legislation in May 2011. Harsher penalties were introduced, particularly for offences where blood alcohol concentration (BAC) levels above 80mg/100mL are recorded. Deemed to be drunk under the law, this is now a criminal offence attracting penalties including large monetary fines, licence suspension for 5 years and imprisonment.

Objective

This paper outlines key statistics about alcohol-related road trauma in Zhejiang Province and strategies used to combat drink- and drunk-driving.

Key Outcomes

Zhejiang Province, in China’s south east, has a population of approximately 54, 426,000; 22.36% hold a driving licence. Rapid motorisation is occurring there. In 2011, 1,383,318 new licences were issued, representing a 16.78% increase from the previous year. In 2012, there were a total of 65,000 police officers throughout the Province, 12,307 of whom (18.9%) were traffic police. Responsibility for conducting alcohol testing is the responsibility of all traffic police. The number of alcohol breath tests conducted per year was not available. However, traffic police are actively enforcing alcohol-related laws. In 2011, 89,228 drivers were charged with drink-driving (DUI;20-80mg/100 mL) and 10,014 with the more serious drunk-driving offence (DWI;>80mg/100mL) (Zhejiang Traffic Management Department, 2012). These numbers decreased from the previous year (221,262 and 26,390 respectively). For all crashes recorded in 2011 (n=20,176), 2% involved alcohol-impaired road users. Information on the role of alcohol in crashes from previous years was not available.

Discussion

Various strategies are employed to detect alcohol-impaired drivers including: targeting vehicles from hotels/restaurants; using sense of smell to screen drivers for further testing; passive alcohol sensors to test drivers; and blood tests for crash-involved drivers where a fatality occurred. Although resources to promote road safety are limited, various government initiatives promote awareness of the dangers of alcohol-related driving and more are needed in future.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 64250
Item Type: Conference Paper
Refereed: No
Keywords: drink driving, drunk driving, police, China, driver training
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2013 [please consult the author]
Deposited On: 18 Nov 2013 23:34
Last Modified: 20 Nov 2013 18:21

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