The Mumbai traffic police have asked the office of state director general of police (DGP) for 91 new breath analysers to enforce the law against drunk drivers.
Sources in the traffic police said they have 82 breath analysers, with 24 printers.
Of these, 26 are not working, which leaves them with only 56 for the entire city.
There was a time when the traffic police had over 200 breath analysers.
Sources said that during a breath analysis test, the saliva of the testee sometimes gets stuck in the machine.
This leads to improper functioning of the analyser and erroneous results.
Hence, many such breath analysers were discarded over time. Senior officials of the Mumbai police wrote to the DGP’s office recently asking them to supply the department with new breath analysers.
According to procedure, the requirements of various units of the state police, including those of the Mumbai police, are met by the procurement department of the state police.
The drive against drink driving using breath analysers has been quite effective in the city, and there has been a steady decrease in the number cases.
For instance, in 2011, there were 16,324 cases of drink driving, while 2012 saw 14,220 violations.
Up to September 3 this year, there have been 9,989 drink-driving cases.
After the drive was initiated from June 2007, many hoteliers started offering drivers to their patrons.
A few organisations also started providing driver services.
According to the norms of the Motor Vehicles Act, anyone who is found to have an alcohol count that exceeds 30 milligrams during the breath analyser test facesimprisonment for a term which may extend to six months, or fine which may go up to Rs2,000, or both of the above.
Pratap Dighavkar, deputy commissioner of police (traffic) confirmed that the Mumbai traffic police had asked for new breath analysers from the director general of police’s office.