Drunk driving in South Africa is not to be taken lightly and drinking and driving is a very serious offence. The gravity of drunken driving charges should be enough to frighten anyone away from driving drunk, but there can also be far more grave repercussions that can occur when drivers don’t watch their blood alcohol limit – these can be fatal consequences.
Local Drunk Driving Laws in South Africa
Any person driving on South African roads should be familiar with the local drunk driving laws in South Africa. Here’s a summary of the laws to make it easier for you:
1. No person on a public road shall -
Occupy a driver’s seat of a motor vehicle, the engine of which is running, while under the influence of intoxicating liquor or a drug having a narcotic effect.
2. No person on a public road shall -
Occupy a driver’s seat of a motor vehicle, the engine of which is running, while the concentration of alcohol in any specimen of blood taken from his or her body is not less than 0.05 grams per 100 millilitres.
3. The two-hour rule -
According to the National Traffic Act 1996, if in any prosecution for a contravention of the provisions of subsection (2), it is proved that the concentration of alcohol in any specimen of blood taken from any part of the body of the person concerned was not less than 0.05 grams per 100 millilitres at any time within two hours after the alleged offence, it shall be presumed, until the contrary is proved, that such concentration was not less than 0.05 grams per 100 millilitres of blood at the time of the alleged offence.
Implications of Being Caught Drunk Driving in South Africa
Perhaps you’ve been “lucky” up to now and you have not been caught drinking and driving; because you think that you are capable of driving drunk. But what are the implications if you do get caught?
If you’re found guilty of drunk driving in South Africa you could face up to 6 years in jail. You could also be liable for fines of up to R120 000 and your driver’s license may be suspended. You will also have a criminal record which can have serious ramifications for the rest of your life. Of course, the worst case scenario is that you could kill someone else on the road, your loved ones or yourself.
Solution to drunk driving in South Africa
There is some good news for those folks who are out on the town and find they’re unable to drive home. If you’re worried about driving your vehicle back to your hotel drunk (which you should be), ask Drive South Africa to book you a car with a supplier partnered with a designated driver service. This means that you won’t have to drive your car rental when intoxicated and breach your car hire contract.