Drivers caught from December with a blood alcohol content of more than 1.3 grammes per litre will be forced to have breathalyser immobilisers in their cars, the Dutch Infrastructure Ministry said Wednesday.
"With the breathalyser programme, the minister wants to reduce the number of road accidents in which alcohol plays a role," it said in a press release.
The plan is to reduce road deaths by five or six per year, the ministry said. In the Netherlands, about 130 people died in alcohol-related traffic accidents last year.
The immobiliser connected to the car's circuit will prevent drivers from starting the engine if they have a blood-alcohol level of more than 0.2g/litre. The Dutch maximum limit is 0.5 g/l.
"The driver must not only blow into the breathalyzer before ignition, but also several times while the car is moving," the statement said.
Motorists should also be trained to realise the dangers of drinking and driving.
"Violators will be billed between 1,500 and 2,000 euros ($2,000 and $2,700) for the installment of the immobilisers and training and will also have to buy a special driver's licence," ministry spokesman Elif Hagci told AFP.
If drivers refuse to have the device installed, their licences will be revoked for a minimum of five years.
Other countries including France, the United States, Canada and Australia and Sweden have developed similar programmes.
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