Drinking Drivers and the Criminal Justice System

  • Ross Homel
Part of the Research in Criminology book series (RESEARCH CRIM.)


In all developed countries, the criminal justice system is assigned a key role in the fight against drinking and driving. The problem is construed not as one of car design (constructing a crash-proof vehicle), or of the regulation of big business (reconciling profits from the sale of alcohol with public safety), or as one of the roadside environment (making it more forgiving of the inebriated motorist). Responsibility is placed squarely on the shoulders of the individual driver. If he cannot be educated or persuaded to separate drinking and driving, then reliance must be placed on the heavy hand of the law to deter, or in the case of the convicted offender, to punish and incapacitate as well. Therefore, to speak of drink-drive countermeasures as they currently operate is, by and large, equivalent to discussing the operation of the police, courts, licensing agencies, and prisons. This is particularly the case in Australia, which has a greater commitment to mass breath testing of motorists than almost any other Western nation.


Criminal Justice System Problem Drinker Blood Alcohol Concentration Social Drinker Drunk Driver 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1988

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ross Homel
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Behavioural SciencesMacquarie UniversitySydneyAustralia

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