Sport News

Barbados Automobile Association welcomes breathalyser

The Barbados Automobile Association (BAA), which has played an ongoing part in the road safety developments of recent years, has welcomed confirmation that breathalyser testing is slated to start from April 1. Pointing out that Barbadians who travel overseas and visitors from most of the island’s source markets for tourism are very aware of drink driving rules, BAA President Adrian Linton said: “It should come as no surprise that this legislation has come to the island at last.”
  The BAA is a member of the Barbados Motoring Federation (BMF), which is affiliated to the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), whose former President Jean Todt visited the island in 2017 in his capacity as the United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety. During his visit he met Prime Minister, the Hon Freundel Stuart, Chair of the Barbados National Road Safety Council (BNRSC), in wide-ranging discussions, including the aim of a target of no road fatalities – dubbed ‘Vision Zero’, which has developed into the #3500LIVES Campaign in the intervening years.
  After those discussions, President Todt said: “We know how to do it, it’s around education, it’s around law enforcement, road infrastructure, safer vehicles and post-crash care. I know that there are people who are not respecting not to drink and drive, some people who are not respecting the speed limits, but it must be changed.”
  Of the new legislation, Linton added: “It is another tool in the arsenal to help reduce road accidents and fatalities on our roads. In an environment where there is already a myriad of distractions for drivers, further complications as a result of impairment from alcohol consumption can finally be addressed.
  “As social drinking is very much the norm in Barbados, introduction of breathalyser testing may be seen by some as a negative. We have all heard the ‘I can hold my drinks’ rhetoric, but scientific testing proves otherwise. Motor skills and reaction time are impaired. Does breathalyser testing mean an end to social drinking and partying? Absolutely not, but it does mean a change in mindset as it relates to transportation arrangements for those who enjoy the consumption of alcohol – a greater reliance on designated drivers, taxis, buses and friends who do not drink.
  “We would hope that breathalyser testing would not be carried out punitively but that it would act as a catalyst to change persons mindset to the responsibility associated with alcohol consumption. We are all our brother’s keeper and we owe it to one another to do our part to keep each other safe.”
Editor’s note: affiliated to the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), which rules the sport worldwide, the Barbados Motoring Federation (BMF) is the island’s governing body for motor sport. Away from motor sport, the BMF affiliate which answers the FIA Mobility remit is the Barbados Automobile Association (BAA), which is an executive committee member of the Government’s Barbados Road Safety Council.
For media information only. No regulatory value.
For further information:
please contact BAA President, Adrian Linton - e-mail: