Local MSP David Stewart, Labour, is well known as a road safety campaigner. Concerned over drink driver statistics for the Highlands and Islands he looked at the year-on-year figures.
David Stewart said:
” I have found the desired documents on line which reveal that the detections for drink driving in the Highlands & Islands for the year 2014/15 was 430. For the years 2015/16 it was 484,for 16/17 it was 409 and for 17/18 it was 484 the same as years 2015/16.
” My analysis of these statistics reveal that the introduction of a lower drink drive limit has done little to deter the drinker and driver. Four years ago in the Highlands & Islands there were 430 offenders detected. Last year for the same period that number jumped to 484, so the trend is upwards.
” To address this issue we have to look at other options such as alcohol ignition interlocks being fitted to new vehicles and mandatory rehabilitation programmes for those convicted of drink driving. Clearly we need to do more with regards education.
“In this regards I will be writing to the Cabinet Secretary for Transport asking what further measures the Government are taking to deal with the serious issue of drinking and driving because there clearly is a hard core of such people out there who are not listening and are a danger to other road users.”
David Stewart has also turned his attention to the use of lights now we are into shorter daylight hours.
” I am becoming more and more aware of drivers driving their cars in the twilight without displaying dipped headlights.
” The message is simple, Switch Onto Safer Roads
“You don’t use your dipped headlights just to see where you are going, you need to light up to also be seen. Drivers should not rely on daytime driving lights on new cars as they are illuminated at the front of the vehicle only.There is no point in driving along with daytime running lights only displayed if following vehicles struggle to see you. I agree that before or around dawn or similarly at dusk or thereabout’ s, drivers can see the road and where they are going, but the light conditions are such that they should be lighting up.
” I am appealing to drivers to use their dipped headlights whilst driving in any form of poor visibility. We used to say ‘See and be Seen’ this still applies, as does ‘Switch Onto Safer Roads’. This is the time of year we need to get this message across if we want our roads to be safer.”