Taxi drivers seek random breath tests

Polly Hui

Taxi drivers urged the government yesterday to empower police to carry out random breath tests during the soccer World Cup next month, after a suspected drink-driving accident that killed two people in Yau Ma Tei on Sunday.

Kwok Chi-piu, chairman of the Urban Taxi Drivers' Association Joint Committee, said his group was concerned soccer fans who had been drinking would emerge from pubs and bars to drive, posing a serious risk to the lives of other road users.

Under the present legislation, police can require a person to take a breath test if he is involved in a traffic accident or commits a moving traffic offence. But a driver can decline to be tested if there has been no accident.

Lam Kwai-keung, spokesman for a union that represents about 500 taxi drivers in the New Territories, said many people drove even when their alcohol level far exceeded the legal limit because they knew officers could not force them to take a breath test.