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Breathalyser test regulation finally approved by Cabinet

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by Curlan Campbell, NOW Grenada

  • Mandatory breathalyser test regulation approved
  • Breathalyser testing is used to determine blood alcohol concentration

The regulation that will autonomise the Traffic Department of the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) to enforce the mandatory breathalyser test did not materialise for the carnival season as was anticipated.

On Monday, the cabinet finally approved the regulation that will require drivers suspected of drunk driving to take a breathalyser test once pulled over by police.

In 2017 both Houses of Parliament amended the Road Traffic Regulation to clamp down on driving while using mobile handheld devices, which came into effect on 1 February 2018. It also provides for drivers who are suspected to be under the influence of mind-altering substances, to take a mandatory breathalyser test.

Minister for Trade, Industry, Cooperatives, and Caricom Affairs, Oliver Joseph made the pronouncement during Tuesday’s Post-Cabinet Briefing. He said that since this test is scientific, the RGPF must have specialised equipment to conduct these tests.

“As you know this is a very scientific process, it means that we have to have the correct instruments to do this test because I am aware that you could face some challenges if you do not have the correct instruments. But that is a widely established practice and so the measurement and the levels are well established to determine the alcohol in your system,” Minister Joseph said.

Minister Joseph said not too long from now the regulation will be sent to the Ministry of Legal Affairs to be drafted before being gazetted, after which a date will be set for implementation. “Now that Cabinet has approved it, the regulation will go to legal affairs for the drafting of the regulation and then it must be published in the Gazette,” he said.

Breathalyser testing is used to determined someone’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) which is a measurement of the percentage of alcohol in one’s bloodstream after the consumption of mind-altering substances such as alcohol.

In the United States and the United Kingdom, the legal limit to drive is any number below .08. Any figure above .08 grams per decilitre of blood (g/dL) — which is equivalent to the UK’s legal limit of 80 milligrams (80 mg) of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood — is considered illegal, and if a driver is caught with such alcohol levels they will be charged for driving under the influence (DUI).

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Caribbean & World

Prime Minister meets with executive members of Caribbean Congress of Labour

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Prime Minister, Dr the Right Honourable Keith Mitchell, and Minister of Labour, Honourable, Peter David, met Friday with executive members of the Caribbean Congress of Labour (CCL) who were in Grenada for a meeting of the regional organisation.

In welcoming the team, headed by President Andre Lewis of Grenada, Dr Mitchell underscored the importance of the labour movement and of working together.

He noted that the current Chair of the Caribbean Community, Honourable Mia Mottley of Barbados shares that opinion, hence the invitation to labour representatives to attend the inter-sessional meeting in Barbados this week.

Dr Mitchell said, “In the new global community, unless we work together, we would not survive. We need to unify our efforts – businesses, governments and labour to meet the fundamental challenges we face today. The Government of Grenada looks forward to continued cooperation as we go forward.”

Andre Lewis, who was elected President of the CCL last November, said the organisation also favours the collaborative approach and welcomed the opportunity to work with Caribbean leaders. He said, the CCL also believes the tripartite approach is necessary.

The Prime Minister also raised the issue of productivity, which he said needs to be addressed. The CCL executive members noted that productivity must be looked at in all its dimensions.

The subject of a possible government subvention for the CCL was discussed. Dr Mitchell, who is also the Minister of Finance, said government will be willing to support efforts by the regional trade union umbrella body, especially as it endeavours to empower its membership.

This drive to empower has already started. Through the CCL’s partnership with Cipriani College of Labour and Cooperative Studies in Trinidad and Tobago, the Grenada Trades Union Council is planning a one-week training session in leadership for its affiliates.

Dr Mitchell also suggested that the trade unions get involved in business ventures that can benefit their members over time. Some unions in Trinidad and Tobago and Dominica are already engaged in such activities and Dr Mitchell suggested that this approach be encouraged in other countries, including Grenada.

Office of the Prime Minister

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CARIBEWAVE 2020 to be staged on 19 March

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The National Disaster Management Agency (NaDMA) continues its preparation for the hosting of CARIBEWAVE 2020, carded for Thursday, 19 March 2020.

This year’s scenario will involve a 8.9 magnitude earthquake just off the coast of Jamaica, triggering a tele-tsunami in our area.

The exercise will be held along the western corridor: Victoria, Gouyave and Grand Mal, but triggering a national response.

The 2020 exercise gives the sister isles of Carriacou and Petite Martinique a unique opportunity to test the SOP (Standard Operating Protocol) created in 2019 as part of the certification of being Tsunami Ready in November 2019.

The exercise will be conducted simultaneously in Carriacou and Petite Martinique. We therefore encourage the general public to visit the website Tsunamizone.org to register for the exercise.

CARIBEWAVE (Caribbean Tsunami Warning Exercise) is a tsunami exercise held annually in the Caribbean, including Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, under the direction of UNESCO and the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.

The purpose of the CARIBEWAVE exercise is to improve the effectiveness of the Tsunami Warning System along the Caribbean coast.  The exercise provides an opportunity for emergency management organisations throughout the region to test their operational lines of communications, review their tsunami response procedures, and to promote tsunami preparedness.

The objectives of the CARIBEWAVE Exercise are to test and evaluate the operations of the Caribbean Tsunami Warning System (Caribe EWS), to validate preparedness response to a tsunami (which are test protocols and communications systems between tsunami warning centres and the tsunami warning focal points), and the use of the PTWC (Pacific Tsunami Warning Center) enhanced tsunami products for the Caribbean, as well as assist in tsunami preparedness efforts of the emergency management agencies in those areas.

For additional information, please contact Oslyn Crosby Public Relations Officer, NaDMA on 440-8390/ 440-0838, or 533-0766 email: nadma@spiceisle.com / nadmapr@gmail.com . 

NaDMA, the official source for all disaster related information in Grenada. 

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Caribbean & World

Missing Man Found | NOW Grenada

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30-year old, Devon Jeffrey of La Mode, St George, who was reported missing on Monday, 17 February 2020 has been found and has been reunited with his family. 

The Royal Grenada Police Force thanks the general public and the media for their continued support.

Office of Commissioner of Police

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