Within the framework of the special session in the National Congress, the Chamber of Deputies of the Nation it gave medium sanction to the reform of the Transit Law in the modification to a zero tolerance regarding the amount of alcohol per liter of blood to drive a vehicle.
The initiative had a divided vote: 193 affirmative, 19 against and four abstentions. It is worth mentioning that the suffrage with certain doubts belongs mostly to legislators from wine-producing provinces.
The modification to the present Traffic Law 24,449 has as purpose reduce 0.5 grams of alcohol per liter in blood – what is allowed to drive so far – to 0 grams. The measure of Zero Alcohol already was implemented in 13 provinceswhere a lower number of statistics regarding traffic accidents due to the effects of alcoholic beverages was recorded.
The project received the positive vote to a greater extent by legislators. In this sense, the deputy of the Frente de Todos, Ramiro Gutierrezstated that the initiative “It is a law that builds rights for victims based on evidence and that has a clear and direct purpose, to improve road safety in Argentina, that is why we remove alcohol from the wheel of Argentines.”
Along these lines, the president of the block of legislators of the PRO, Christian Ritondopointed out a problem linked to the “More than a thousand Argentines die every year as a result of drunk drivers, 1 in 4 road accidents is associated with this problem”. To that, he added that “Today we are making the half penalty a reality but we need to move forward as a society.”
The deputy of the block Vamos con Vos, Florencio Randazzoratified that “The zero alcohol law is very simple, there is only one interest to defend, which is life. That is why I celebrate the half sanction of this law so that finally this results in better road safety in Argentina”.
The official legislator Daniel Arroyogave the go-ahead for the bill to be discussed in the Senate: “I understand that the issue of road accidents goes far beyond the problem of alcohol consumption, which has other dimensions, but here we are doing something clear, saying zero alcohol behind the wheel”.
Other voices that spoke in favor of the measure was that of the PRO legislator, Maria Lujan Reywho stated that in the session they are “regulating how to drive in our country”and that “This law comes to equalize the responsibility of drivers prioritizing safety”. “The good that we want to protect is neither more nor less than the good of life”sentenced.
The Chairman of the Transport Committee, Jorge Rizzottithanked “the commitment of many NGOs that are with us today and that were the ones who put in the knowledge of all the deputies the objective of this lawwhich is far from being a law against alcohol consumption”. In this sense, the radical legislator clarified that the measure “It does not have to do with the prohibition of drinking but of not driving when alcohol has been consumed.”
Voices against the measure of zero alcohol driving
The legislator of Avanza Libertad, Jose Luis Espert, He was against the measure stating that “It is a very limited law, there is no substantive change”and add “more driver’s education”. “We are talking about a law that will lower the maximum blood alcohol level to 0.0 for private drivers, on national roads or under federal jurisdiction.”emphasized the libertarian politician.
Ricardo Lopez Murphydeputy of Republicans United-Together for Change, was another of those who spoke out against the decision by saying the following: “I think we did not go where the key to the problem is: in penalties, in management and in driver education. This legislation does not put the emphasis where it should be and for this reason I do not agree with the project of the majority”.
The deputy for radicalism, Jimena Latorregave his negative vote justifying that “We are changing so that nothing changes”. In addition, the legislator summarized that “We have lost the necessary sensitivity to look the recipients of these rules in the face and tell them that the proposed modification is not going to change reality at all, that it is pure demagogy.”