30 May 2016 – The breath-test campaign, dubbed “blow before you go” was part of promoting road safety best practices at the annual MTN Bush Fire festival in partnership with the organisers of the event.
Hosted from 27 – 29 May at the House on Fire lawn where over 20 000 revellers were in attendance throughout the weekend, the Fund’s stall was a hive of activity as attendees were able to check their alcohol intake through the use of a breathalyser provided by the Fund to ensure that those who had indulged in alcohol and would be driving home had not surpassed the legal limit of 0.38 mg/L.
The Fund was also a major sponsor of the Park and Ride campaign, which was a partnership between Bush Fire, SMVAF and public transport operators aimed at ensuring that those who had imbibed in alcohol were able to be ferried to their destinations at a minimal fee.
Over 320 party goers made use of the breathalyser provision and most of the drivers were smitten with the road safety activation campaign as they would be able to drive themselves home knowing that they were still within the legal alcohol limit intake provided by the law.
SMVAF Corporate Strategy and Communications Manager Makhosi Magongo said that this was a critical precautionary measure under the company’s road safety activation campaign as mandated by MVA Amended Act of 2011 which compels the fund to ‘promote and support road safety awareness and fund research in connection with the development of accident reduction strategies.’
“When people are out having fun, they enjoy themselves, so that is why we have set up a breathalyser station so that before driving, revellers can check their alcohol level to determine and decide if it is still proper for them to drive. If not, we have partnered with public transport operators to transport them to their destination at a small fee,” he said.
The Fund also installed banners at different strategic places at the festival with the aim of directing revellers to the stand whilst also making use of the big screen digital advertising billboard as well.
Of the 321 recorded alcotests taken at the MTN bush Fire festival, the highest recorded reading was 1.41mg/L recorded on Saturday night by one *Bha Nyandoro of Kwaluseni.
Nyandoro was in his element as he visited the stand to check his alcohol intake, and was shocked at the breathalyser reading saying that although he still felt as if he was in his correct senses, he would not drive back home as he knew that he was way above the limit and could be a road hazard to himself and other road users.
“I will not be driving home today as my alcohol intake will send me straight to jail if I should get stopped by traffic police officers, so I will leave my vehicle here at the festival and make use of the Park and Ride facility provided to us,” he said.
*not his real name