Estonia

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Estonia: Punishment for post-crash alcohol consumption to be toughened

The Legal Affairs Committee of the Riigikogu has decided to form a work group to draft an amendment meant to toughen the punishment for consuming alcohol following a car crash.Current law provides for a criminal punishment for drivers with a blood alcohol level exceeding 1.5 permille, but not for drivers who consumed alcohol, a narcotic substance or a psychotropic substance immediately following a car crash, even if their blood alcohol level exceeds 1.5 permille, spokespeople for the Riigikogu said.

“The current regulation enables an intoxicated driver who causes an accident to escape criminal punishment if he claims he consumed alcohol after the accident, i.e. the driver can ease his punishment by telling a lie,” committee chairman Heljo Pikhof said. “It’s not entirely consistent with the sense of the law and also hurts the people’s sense of justice.

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