Thu | Aug 17, 2017

Beware! Police up the ante on drunk drivers

Published:Wednesday | December 16, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Head of the Police Traffic Division, Senior Superintendent Calvin Allen, has informed that officers will be using portable breathalyser devices, as part of a strategy to reduce accidents on the roadways this Christmas.

The devices will be used to test the level of alcohol in the system of a motorist who appears to be driving under the influence of alcohol.

Allen told the Jamaica Constabulary Force Yuletide season press briefing, held at the Commissioner's Office, Old Hope Road, in Kingston, last Friday, that the use of these machines are necessary, as the season presents many challenges, which include drunk driving.

"We want everyone to enjoy the festive season...but we also want you to do so with the highest level of consciousness, responsibility and awareness. Alcohol impairs one's vision and so we want to urge persons to get a designated driver if they intend to drink," the Head of the Traffic Division said.

He warned that if the level of alcohol found in the system of the motorist is more than the allowable limit, the driver will be taken to the police station where the Intoxilyzer 8,000 will be used to generate a report for evidential purpose, and an arrest will be made.

USAID missions director hails J'can support Mission Director of the United States Agency for International Development, Denise A. Herbol, has hailed Jamaicans for the special community spirit and interest shown towards projects supported by the organisation.

The mission director, who has been in Jamaica since November 2011 said money can always be granted by the organisation, but if people do not have the kind of interest that she has seen in Jamaica, little success will come of such resources.

Currently, her organisation is implementing a $330 million (US$3 million) programme in Jamaica, to support targeted community activities under Phase Two of its Community Empowerment and Transformation Project.

The small grants programme provides direct funding support to community groups, faith-based organisations, non-governmental organisations, and civil society organisations, to assist in strengthening local governance structures, and improving safety and security, particularly in volatile and vulnerable areas.

Pedestrian shelter to be erected in Hanover 

A pedestrian shelter is to be built at the Esher Primary School, near Lucea, in Hanover, by the Staff Association of the Grand Palladium Resort and Spa, at a cost of $500,000.

Ground was broken for the facility on December 8, and it is expected to be ready for the beginning of the Easter school term on January 4.

Addressing the ceremony, president of the Hotel's Staff Association, Leroy Peart, said the group identified the need at the school and regarded it as their corporate responsibility.

"We had made the decision to move quickly and so will be committing to have the pedestrian shelter constructed before the opening of the next school term," he said.

For his part, Mayor of Lucea, Councillor Wynter McIntosh, commended the Grand Palladium Staff Association for the kind gesture, noting that in time, it will become "a marvellous" landmark for the school and the community.

MOE prepares for Department of School Services

Personnel from the Ministry of Education are being urged to prepare themselves for major structural and operational changes through the upcoming establishment of the Department of School Services (DSS), under the Education System Transformation Programme.

At a meeting of the ministry's senior staff members on December 11, at the Jamaica Conference Centre, in downtown Kingston, Permanent Secretary, Dr Maurice Smith, advised that starting in January, the ministry will begin to regularise all posts.

"The idea is that the Ministry of Education has got to organise itself better to support our students," he said, while highlighting the pertinence of the ongoing modernisation process.

The DSS is being set up to officially separate the policy functions of the ministry from the operational responsibilities.