SWOV Catalogus


Primary prevention of drink driving by the large-scale use of alcolocks in commercial vehicles.
I E138530 /83 / ITRD E138530
Bjerre, B. & Kostela, J.
Accident Analysis & Prevention. 2008 /07. 40(4) Pp1294-1299 (12 Refs.)

Samenvatting Alcolocks are commercial breath test devices that prevent a motor vehicle from starting when a driver's blood alcohol concentration (BAC) is elevated. This report is an evaluation of the experiences and BAC data from the first use of alcolocks in commercial vehicles as a primary prevention strategy. In most applications, the alcolock is imposed only after an impaired driving conviction. This study, implemented in Sweden, estimates drink driving on a large scale in a variety of commercial vehicles. Officials from 118 companies were interviewed representing 3689 alcolock-equipped vehicles used by 9614 professional drivers, an 80% compliance rate. In a contrast group of 230 transport businesses without alcolocks the interview compliance rate was 57%. Survey results probed motivation for and experience with alcolocks. Analysis of BAC test patterns showed alcohol consumption among employees through prevalence estimates of drink-driving attempts at the rate of BAC = the legal limit 0.020%. Before alcolock installation, 64% of the employers suspected alcohol problems among their employees and their motive for installing alcolocks (cost averaged 1700 Euro/vehicle) was to improve the transport quality. Several companies had technical problems with the alcolocks; but 98% recommended that other companies install alcolocks. Among 600, heavy vehicles, 0.19% of all starts were prevented by elevated BAC; most during weekends and mornings. Daytime Saturday and Sunday mornings 0.72% of the drivers had elevated BAC. The prevalence of drink driving among professional drivers is probably similar to that among drivers in general. Alcolocks would improve the safety margin and reduce public risk. Provided that the entire fleet of trucks, buses, and taxis in Sweden had installed alcolocks that would correspond to about half a million drink driving trips being prevented every year. (A) Reprinted with permission from Elsevier.
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