9 December 2004
BRUSSELS – An extra 200 police officers are now patrolling the Brussels streets as part of a major Christmas crackdown on drink-driving, it was reported on Thursday.
The capital’s police have pledged to carry out 100,000 controls by 15 January.
The first were done on Wednesday evening and saw the police using new powers to hand out on-the-spot fines in many cases.
Under the new rules, which came into force earlier this year, drivers found to have between 0.5 to 0.8g of alcohol per litre in the bloodstream can be fined up to EUR 137.50.
Any driver who has had about four drinks (with 0.8g/l) could be fined EUR 400 and up to six drinks (from 1.2g/l) could mean a EUR 550 fine.
Drivers with 1.5g/l of alcohol in their bloodstream will face a day in court with the likelihood of a stiff fine – between EUR 1100 and 11000.
Anyone over the limit could also be banned from driving for as little as three hours, or for longer on the decision of a judge.
[Copyright Expatica 2004]
Subject: Belgian news