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Don't Become A Statistic This Easter

Don't Become A Statistic This Easter

World Health Day Puts Spotlight on Drink Driving

Coinciding with the upcoming Easter break is World Health Day (April 7), which will this year turn its focus to road safety. According to the World Health Organisation, more than 1.2 million men, women and children die on road related accidents around the world, each year.[1]

In recognition of this, the World Spirits Alliance, which represents the world's leading distillers and suppliers of fine spirits, and of which the Distilled Spirits Association of New Zealand is a member, is adamantly opposed to drunk driving and has long been engaged in the fight against it.

Around the world, global spirits companies and others provide substantial financial support to a number of social responsibility organisations to help ensure the fight against drunk driving continues in a sustained and effective way. Internationally, organisations such as the Portman Group, The Century Council, and the Amsterdam Group amongst others are leaders in the fight against drink driving.

In New Zealand, various initiatives have succeeded in bringing down the number of road deaths resulting from drink driving, although there is clearly still room for improvement. Alcohol related fatalities have fallen by more than a third over the last decade with 27% of all deaths in 2002 being alcohol related (compared with 42.3% in 1992).[2]

According to Dr John Bailey, New Zealand's foremost road transport researcher, the main menaces on the roads are those who habitually drive with more than double the legal limit of blood alcohol in their systems.

For driving, the law states for adults that their maximum blood alcohol is up to 80milligrams and for those under 20 years their blood alcohol cannot exceed 30mg per 100ml of blood.

Chief executive for the Distilled Spirits Association, Thomas Chin, comments: "Our members, which include leading producers and marketers of premium spirit and liqueur brands, are keen to work with relevant agencies and the community to further make drunk driving socially unacceptable."

"Like most holiday weekends, Easter is a time when many New Zealanders will be travelling. We plead with drivers to use their common sense and keep safe on the roads this Easter."

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