The Secretary of State for Transport has approved PACTS’ recommendation for a three-month extension to the deadline for Stage 3 of the MEBTI competition, to 31 March 2021. This is in light of the difficulties facing the industry arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.
PACTS is running a competition, with funding from the Department for Transport, to encourage companies to develop “roadside” breath-testing equipment, of an evidential standard, and to obtain Home Office type approval. They would then be available for use by the police, with the evidence accepted by the courts, avoiding the need to take a driver to a police station for the evidential testing.
The Mobile Evidential Breath Testing Instruments (MEBTI) competition has now reached Stage 3 – submission of instruments for final testing and approval. In December, the Secretary of State for Transport approved PACTS’ recommendation for a three-month extension to the deadline for Stage 3 of the MEBTI competition, to 31 March 2021. This is in light of the difficulties facing the industry arising from the Covid-19 pandemic.
To date, one company has summitted instruments to Dstl for approval. Others may follow.
David Davies, Executive Director of PACTS, said,
” Some ten after legislation was passed to allow evidential roadside breath-testing, there is real progress – a small piece of good news in the Covid gloom. If the instruments pass the final tests, which are demanding and rigorous, evidential roadside breath-testers, from one or more companies, may be available for the police to use in 2022. This would be a major advantage in combatting drink driving which accounts for around 250 deaths a year in Great Britain.
“We are pleased to be running this MEBTI competition, on behalf of the Department for Transport. It has provided encouragement, incentive and funding to the developers.”
Further details of the competition are on the PACTS website and available from PACTS.