LAW EACH WEEK
Is drunk driving in itself punishable by law?
Yes. Drunk driving is punishable under Section 5 of Republic Act No. 10586 otherwise known as “Anti-Drunk and Drugged Driving Act of 2013. It specifically identified driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, dangerous drugs and/ or other similar substances as an unlawful act.
Why is it punishable when it has not caused trouble at all?
The essence of this law is the protection of life and property as well as the promotion of the general welfare by encouraging drivers to submit to a certain degree of ethical driving standards.
The criminal liability under this law attaches the moment a person who drives a vehicle under the influence of the said substances, in this case, alcohol. The legislature, by authoring the law, aimed to warn the public of the detrimental effects of drunk driving or driving under the influence as it can be seen from Section 5 that the law makes no distinction as to whether or not it is necessary that there be damage to another person before the offender can be penalized.
What is the punishment when you are caught driving drunk?
Section 12 of the said law provides a penalty of 3 months imprisonment and a fine ranging from P20,000.00 to P80,000.00 shall be imposed on the drunk driver if his actions did not result in physical injuries or homicide.
However, it the act resulted in physical injuries, then the penalty provided for in Article 263 of the Revised Penal Code or a fine of P100,000.00 whichever is higher shall be imposed.
If the commission of drunk driving resulted to homicide, the penalty provided for under Article 249 of the Revised Penal Code and a fine ranging from P300,00.00 tot P500,00.00 shall be imposed.
Additionally, in all instances above, the non-professional driver’s license of the offender will be confiscated and will be suspended for 12 months, if it is the first conviction. If it is his second conviction, then the license will be revoked perpetually. The law is stricter for holders of professional licenses solely to protect the interest of the public. If the drunk driver has a professional license, then the same will be perpetually revoked even on the first conviction.
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