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2004-12-07 08:17

Rusana Philander

Leonard Ramatlakane, the Western Cape minister of community safety and acting premier at present, said at the launch of the Arrive Alive campaign, that traffic offenders could expect no mercy.

"We will not negotiate with those who drive under the influence of alcohol and take the lives of others.

"This weekend, 18 people died in car accidents. This is unacceptable," he said.

"Vehicles belonging to reckless and drunken drivers will be confiscated. The guilty will follow in the footsteps of Benjamin Kleinbooi," he added.

Last month, Kleinbooi had his vehicle seized in Laingsburg after apparently being caught for drunken driving.

Irresponsible driving

Ramatlakane confirmed that the legal blood/alcohol level had been reduced from 0.08g/100ml of blood to 0.05g.

According to him, the accident rate last year dropped by 32%. He also said that 95% of accidents were caused by irresponsible driving.

Wendy Watson of the department of transport said on Monday they were sending out 40 letters to people around the country who stood to lose their vehicles.

These are people who have been found guilty of such transgressions.

Peter Volmink, deputy director of the asset forfeiture unit, said: "People who go over the speed limit and drive under the influence of alcohol, will lose their vehicles."

In the case of a vehicle not being paid off, it would be handed back to the bank. But, the owner still would be responsible for the repayments, he said.

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