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Department of Transport and Main Roads

Drink driving review

Drink driving in Queensland

In 2010, 50 people were killed as a result of crashes involving drink drivers. This represents 20.1 per cent of all road fatalities in Queensland for that period. In the same year there were more than 29,000 drink driving offences detected in Queensland.

As part of our commitment to working with the community, the Queensland Government reviewed the current approach to tackling drink driving and developed a discussion paper to gain input on a range of possible drink driving initiatives. Consultation on the discussion paper closed on 17 May 2010.

Discussion paper

Drink driving in Queensland — A discussion paper

Also available to download in two smaller files, File 1 and File 2

The discussion paper outlined a number of discussion points for consideration. Some of these initiatives had been adopted in other Australian jurisdictions and overseas while others were further enhancements to programs and policies currently being used in Queensland.

The online community consultation on the discussion paper was open from 14 March 2010 and closed on Monday 17 May 2010. Two community forums were also held in Townsville and Brisbane where the community was able to provide face-to-face feedback. One-on-one interviews and focus groups were also held with drink driving offenders to establish their views on the initiatives proposed.

Consultation report

The findings from this consultation were independently analysed by the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety Queensland (CARRS-Q) and a summary report has been produced.

Summary of key findings from the drink driving discussion paper consultation process.

New initiatives

Since the review a number of initiatives have been introduced to tackle drink driving:

  • In July 2010, the zero breath/blood alcohol concentration was extended to all learner, provisional and probationary drivers, not just those aged under 25 years. The zero breath/blood alcohol concentration also now applies to RE motorcycle riders restricted to riding approved motorcycles (Class RE) in their first 12 months of holding that licence, regardless of age.
  • In August 2010 the alcohol ignition interlock program commenced for certain high risk and repeat drink driving offenders.

From 1 July 2011:

  • If you are detected driving with a breath/blood alcohol concentration of 0.10 or higher you will have your licence immediately suspended
  • To assist Police in rural and remote regions to identify and prosecute drink drivers:
    • the time allowed for Police to take a breath or blood specimen for drink driving offences will be increased from two to three hours
    • the arresting or detaining officer will also be allowed to conduct the breath analysis (evidentiary test) for drink driving offences.

The next steps

The next steps front cover.

The Government is actively negotiating with stakeholders on the cost and issues involved in developing other more complex initiatives arising from the review.

More information on what has happened so far and what is planned can be found in:

Drink driving in Queensland – The next steps

Last updated 14 August 2023