Kenya: Alcoblow returns to tame road accidents

Nairobi Kenya – Police are set to resume use of Alcoblow on Kenyan roads after almost five years of suspension.

Implementation of the use of Alcoblow will come into force following a bill signed by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The bill was sponsored by Tiaty MP Kasses Kamket before the House adjourned.

Under the new bill, anyone found guilty of drink-driving will face a fine not exceeding 100,000 shillings or two years in prison or both and will have their license suspended for a year.

Under the Traffic Amendment Act 2021, the offense of driving while intoxicated is reduced to “Any person who, while driving or attempting to drive, or is in charge of a motor vehicle on a road or another public place, is under the influence of an alcoholic beverage or drug beyond the prescribed limits, commits an offence,” The law states that the Alco shot must be used as an objective test to provide measurable applications for the prescribed limit.

The bill also targets drivers who exceed speed limits, and those found guilty of the offense risk having their license suspended for three years.

Alcoblow tests will be carried out by the National Transportation and Safety Authority (NTSA) and traffic police. By law, drivers must not operate vehicles if they have consumed more than 35 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millimeters of breath, 80 milligrams of alcohol in 100 milliliters of blood and 107 milligrams of alcohol in 100 milliliters urine.

Matatu drivers and operators are not required to consume alcohol, however, and their level must remain at zero.

Kenya had implemented the use of Alcoblow tests until 2019 when it was withdrawn due to misuse by police officers who erected unnecessary roadblocks in various parts of the country, mainly on the highways and major cities.

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