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PARC happy with Dempsey clarification 29.02.08

DRIVERS injured in crashes in Inishowen are asking to be taken to hospitals in Derry for treatment to avoid being tested for drink or drugs, according to the PARC road safety group.
PARC this week informed Transport Minister Noel Dempsey of the problem and said the Minister pledged to look into the matter.
"He was not aware of this and assured us that when he is meeting with his counterpart in Northern Ireland in March or April of this year he will ensure that this will be on his agenda and he thanked us for bringing it to his attention," said PARC founder and chairperson, Susan Gray.
Susan Gray. "He believes that the transfer of penalty points between the Republic and Northern Ireland is also an extremely urgent matter and he will do all in his power to bring this about within the shortest possible timeframe," she said.
PARC met with Minister Dempsey in the Dáil on Wednesday to get a firm answer in relation to the compulsory testing of drivers involved in all accidents.
"The Minister confirmed that he will be introducing legislation for the compulsory testing of all drivers involved in even the slighest collision attended by Gardai.
"He told us that the Government has decided 
that in the event of a collision where a driver is seriously injured and taken to hospital there will be provisions put in place to ensure that he/she is tested for alcohol," added Ms. Gray.
PARC sought the meeting after concerns were raised that the Minister intended only legislating for compulsory testing in the case of serious accidents only. They say they are now happy with the clarification.
"Wording of the Road Traffic Act will change and the new legislation will say drivers SHALL be tested rather than MAY be tested as it stands at present.
"PARC is very pleased with the meeting and we hope that the promised change in legislation will be a reality before the end of the year. This will be the ultimate deterrent to drink driving and unnecessary loss of life," added Culdaff-based Ms. Gray.
She said her group would keep up the pressure until the required piece of legislation was enacted into law.
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