LAST Saturday’s Weekend Witness featured an article on Caro Smit and the organisation she has founded called South Africans Against Drunk Driving (SADD). This is in memory of her son who was killed by an alleged drunken driver. A clearer perspective on this vexed issue and a number of practical possibilities have emerged as a result of Smit's bold initiative. She makes it clear that drunk driving is a choice, and for those who have lost relatives as a result of it, it is perceived as murder. She argues how crucial it is for steps to be taken away from such choice, for example by hiring a taxi to go home if one is over the limit. At some popular taverns a “buddy bus” is now available to take customers home free of charge. The police should make a habit of being present at such venues in order to enforce breathalyser tests and make instant arrests where necessary.
None of these strategies would be necessary if people took appropriate responsibility for themselves either by avoiding alcohol completely or by ensuring that they keep to the legal and acceptable limit.