Yes, you read that correctly. County Kerry, located in Ireland, has approved a law that will allow certain residents to drive with a higher BAC than normal as long as they qualify and are driving on little-used roads in rural areas. Under these circumstances, the town believes, drunk driving is less likely to cause traffic accidents.
The question is, however, is this a traffic accident waiting to happen?
Residents of County Kerry need to apply for permits in order to drive with a higher BAC. Only older, rural residents would be allowed to apply for this drunk driving permit because, as the proposal’s main proponent states, older residents were less likely to cause accidents on seldom-used roads. The proponent also stated the importance of letting people drive themselves to a pub and back because socializing is an effective tool in preventing mental illness.
To be fair, the new allowed BAC limit for qualified drivers is .07, which is less than the legal limit in the United States. (The BAC limit in the US is .08.) However, does this law set a precedent for more “legalized” drunk driving laws elsewhere?