Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency
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Drink-Drive Rehabilitation courses to be modernised

Drink-Drive Rehabilitation courses to be modernised

News Release issued by the COI News Distribution Service on 09 November 2011

Proposals to modernise the Drink-Drive Rehabilitation Scheme (DDRS) were announced today by the Driving Standards Agency.

These aim to improve both the standard of courses offered to drink-driving offenders and the way they are approved. The proposals are also intended to encourage more training providers to become involved in delivering DDRS courses, improving access to the scheme for offenders in areas with high incidences of drink-driving.

The Government also intends to make the financing of the scheme fairer. Rather than the cost of administering the scheme being met by the general taxpayer, the consultation proposes that offenders should pick up the bill for this through the fees they pay to cover the cost of their training.

The overall aim is to reduce the number of re-offenders by educating them on the potential consequences of their behaviour.

Road Safety Minister Mike Penning said:

"Most drivers are safe and responsible but there is a reckless minority who put lives in danger by drink driving and those drivers need to be tackled effectively.

"As well as taking action to help the police to deal with drink-drivers, we are looking at how we can reduce the likelihood of re-offending through improving the Drink-Drive Rehabilitation Scheme.

"Improving the way courses are delivered is a positive step towards achieving this and will help to ensure Britain's roads remain among the safest in the world."

The Government's Strategic Framework for Road Safety sets out a commitment to improve the enforcement of drink driving legislation by making DDRS courses mandatory for disqualified drink-drivers. The measures proposed in the consultation are the first step in that process.

For further information contact DSA press office on 0115 936 6135, or pressoffice@dsa.gsi.gov.uk.

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ENDS

Notes to Editors:

1. The consultation can be found at www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/dsa-2011-01
2. Out of 1,850 deaths resulting from road accidents in 2010, 250 (14%) were linked to drink-driving offences.
3. Since 1 January 2000, the courts throughout Great Britain have been able to offer to drivers, who have been disqualified for a period of at least 12 months for a relevant drink-driving offence, a referral to an approved Drink-Drive Rehabilitation course.
4. The Rehabilitation Courses (Drink-Drive and Other Offences) Regulations 2012 will come into force on 6 April 2012 and have effect in England and Scotland only.
5. Closing date for responses to the consultation is 6 January 2012.
6. DSA promotes road safety through setting standards for drivers, riders and trainers; testing drivers and riders fairly and efficiently; maintaining the registers of Approved Driving Instructors, Large Goods Vehicle Instructors, Fleet Trainers, Driving Instructor Trainers and Post Test Motorcycle Trainers; supervising Compulsory Basic Training (CBT) for learner motorcyclists; and driver education and the provision of learning resources.
7. DSA is a trading fund with planned income of £195 million in 2011/12, largely funded through fees and revenue from other road safety initiatives. It delivers tests from over 400 practical driving test centres and 158 theory test locations.
8. DSA employs around 2,600 staff, of which just over 1,800 are driving examiners. In 2010/11 DSA conducted over 1.8 million practical tests (of which 1.6 million were car tests) and around 1.6 million theory tests. At the end of 2010/2011 there were around 47,000 people on the Register of Approved Driving Instructors.
9. DSA has an image library at flickr.com/photos/dsagovuk which is free for use by press and news media. However, you must acknowledge DSA Crown copyright.

Contacts:

NDS Enquiries
Phone: For enquiries please contact the issuing dept
ndsenquiries@coi.gsi.gov.uk

DSA Press office
Phone: 0115 936 6135
nds.dsa@coi.gsi.gov.uk