Recent drunk driving sentence had ban was longer than the 12 months usually given to a first-time offender.

It seems drunk driving laws will always be a bone of contention for people. Make the laws to lax, and people worry about more vehicle-related deaths; make the laws too severe, and some drivers say their freedom is being taken away. A judge in Newfoundland & Labrador is firmly in the corner of toughening the limits, and after recently sentencing a drunk driver, suggested Canada's drunk driving laws should be harsher.

According to The Western Star website, Judge Catherine Allen-Westby sentenced Jillian Regular to an 18-month driving ban and a $1,000 fine, after Regular was caught driving erratically and going the wrong direction down a one-way street this past June. Breathalyzer tests found that Regular was well above the maximum .08 blood alcohol content (BAC) level allowed in Canada. The fine was the minimum allowed for the offense, but the ban was longer than the 12 months usually given to a first-time offender.

In Canada, certain adminstrative laws allow police to temporarily suspend licences if drivers have a BAC that's .05 percent or higher.

While sentencing, though, Allen-Westby noted that some countries around the world ban blood alcohol content of any kind in a person who is driving. In those cases, drivers could be convicted regardless if they had one drink or a dozen. "This judge in particular wonders if perhaps that shouldn't be the case in order to cut own on people taking the risk and driving once they consume," Allen-Westby told Regular, according to The Western Star.

While it's rare for a country to have a full zero percent BAC limit, some do have those laws in place, including Afghanistan, Romania, and Morocco. Other nations, such as Cuba and Australia, have a zero percent limit on young drivers and/or those with learner's permits.

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In Canada, certain adminstrative laws allow police to temporarily suspend licences if drivers have a BAC that's .05 percent or higher. Vehicle impounding and education classes are also possible for repeat infractions.

This isn't the first time we'll hear these types of opinions from people - judges or otherwise - and it will be interesting to see what further limitations, if any, will be enacted in the future.

Source: The Western Star, M.A.D.D. Canada

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