Expatica news

One in the eye for drink drivers

5 November 2004

BRUSSELS – An anti-drink driving group has made an inventive pair of glasses its latest weapon in the fight against alcohol-related accidents on Belgium’s roads.

Responsible Young Drivers (RYD) told the media on Friday they had acquired 21 pairs of glasses from the US that simulated the effects of alcohol on humans.

The 14 groups of RYD volunteers throughout Belgium intend to use them to show people the effects alcohol has on a driver’s field of vision, his judgement of distances and his reflexes.

Looking like ski goggles, the glasses come in four different types: the White Label set distorts vision in the same way up to 0.6 grams a litre of alcohol in the bloodstream would; the Bronze Label simulates the vision of someone who has between 0.7 and 1 gram of alcohol in their bloodstream; and the Silver Label shows the effects of between 1.7 and 2 grams.

The Blue Label goggles show the most dangerous driving state of all – the skewed vision and slow reflexes of a person driving under the influence of a combination of drink and drugs.

RYD Belgium’s co-ordinator Axel Druart said he felt the glasses would show people that although some time after they start drinking, they may start to notice the effects of the alcohol less, the reality is that they have simply become used to the physical and visual changes.

“With these glasses they will see the actual difference in a clear way. It’s quite disturbing,” said Druart.

[Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news