Alcohol safety and training specialist AlcoDigital has agreed a contract with Renault Trucks to showcase and offer alcohol safety devices for their latest range of LCV Master business fleet vehicles, which will be displayed at the Freight in the City exhibition on 7th November 2017.
Called the Draeger Interlock 7000, the safety devices, which can be included as an upgraded extra at the customer’s request, will monitor drivers by requiring them to pass a breathalyzer test before they can start the engine. In the event the driver fails the test, the interlock will automatically disable the vehicle for a pre-specified amount of time set by the company. The device can then request further tests throughout the journey.
Drink-driving continues to pose a serious threat to road users in the UK. In August this year, eight people were killed on the M1 after a lorry driver fell asleep at the wheel. The driver was subsequently found to be well over the UK legal drink-drive limit.
Alcohol interlock devices, which are combined with comprehensive rehabilitation programmes, are already required by law to be fitted to the vehicles of convicted drink drive offenders in Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, The Netherlands, Sweden and, most recently, Poland.
A Finnish study from 2013 carried out over a period of four years showed that interlock devices significantly reduced a person’s likelihood to relapse, with only 6% of convicted drink drivers re-offending compared to a rate of 30% for all convicted drink drivers.
Cost has been cited as one of the main reasons for not introducing the interlock device in the UK sooner. If provided separately, the current retail price is around £1,500 + VAT before fitting. However, Renault customers who wish to upgrade their fleet to include the AlcoDigital Interlock will be offered a significant discount as part of this initiative.
Suzannah Robin, who has been an alcohol and drug safety expert at AlcoDigital for over 14years, said:
“As many as 6,500 deaths could be prevented annually if drink driving was eliminated in Europe and several studies have already shown that an alcohol interlock fitted to a vehicle, where a driver has to pass a breath test prior to being allowed to start the engine, has been very effective in cutting repeat drink driving offences.
“We are delighted to be working with Renault Trucks to help improve road safety and reduce drink-drive related deaths.”
Grahame Neagus, Head of LCV UK & Eire for Renault Trucks, added:
“Fitting the Draeger Interlock system is a vital part of not only the new OptiLogistics model but also being able to offer our clients a fully optimised solution that fully supports our stance on providing products that are pushing the boundaries in compliance and safety in road transport.
“We have offered similar devices on our HGV range for some time now, but this is the first time that such a device and system has been offered in the LCV portfolio, which ranges from 2.8 tonnes to 4.5 tonnes GVW and one that, with the huge increase in van traffic, is ideal for its introduction. We are excited about the launch of this combination of the new Renault Trucks Master van and the Draeger Interlock at Freight in the City, where it is hoped the reaction from operators will be very positive. We look forward to working with AlcoDigital on this project moving forward.”