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FEB.

5, 2012 DATE

NR # 2670
REF. NO.

Stiffer penalties for driving under the influence of drugs, alcohol


A lawmaker has filed a bill seeking to minimize, if not completely deter, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs by imposing higher penalties. Rep. Marcelino Teodoro (1st District, Marikina City) authored House Bill 5708 to address the increasing incidence of road mishaps in the country caused by drivers while under the influence of liquor or narcotic drug. Under the bill, an individual with a blood alcohol content of 0.10 percent or more shall be presumed under the influence of alcohol. Likewise, an individual shall be presumed under the influence of prohibited drugs if the quantity of the drug in the system would be sufficient to impair the perception, mental processes or motor function of an average individual. Statistics have shown that driving under the influence of intoxicating drinks and illegal drugs impairs a persons driving skills, Teodoro said. At present, Teodoro said Section 56 of Republic Act 4136 or the Land Transportation and Traffic Code, provides that driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of liquor or a narcotic drug, is penalized with a fine of not less than two hundred pesos nor more than five hundred pesos, or imprisonment of not more than three months, or both, at the discretion of the Court. Teodoro said the bill will increase the penalty of any person who will operate a common carrier while under the influence of alcohol or prohibited drugs to imprisonment of not more than 15 years or a fine of not less than P20,000 but not more than P200,000 or both. Teodoro said the existence of the aforequoted law, notwithstanding, more accidents caused by abuse of alcohol and illegal drugs are being reported every day. It is very evident that the penalties as provided in the law is inadequate and inconsequential compared to the higher risk posed by someone driving or operating a common carrier under the influence of alcohol or prohibited drugs, Teodoro said. Teodoro said more than putting their lives at risk, these drivers and operators endanger the lives of other motorists, as well as, those of their passengers. In filing the bill, Teodoro cited Article II, Section 5 of the Constitution which states that the maintenance of peace and order, the protection of life, liberty, and property, and the promotion of the general welfare are essential for the enjoyment by all the people of the blessings of democracy. Road safety is everyones concern. With the peoples growing dependence on automotive technologies to cope with the demands of modern living, coupled with the growingly complex systems of roads and highways in the country, both the government and citizens should work in unison to ensure traffic regulations, both vehicular and pedestrian, are strictly implemented and

FEB. 5, 2012 DATE

NR # 2670
REF. NO.

observed, Teodoro said. (30) lvc