As early as in 2017, there was an opportunity for our Swedish ports to receive state aids to instal breathalyzers. Political decisions promising provide grants of SEK 78 million were given to increase safety on our Swedish roads and tackle the widespread drunk driving. Minister of Infrastructure Tomas Eneroth expressed that he wanted to see the first gate and breathalyzer integrations put into use in 2018.
So what’s the background to the big grant, and why are the gate-breathalyzers important? MHF (in Swedish) summarizes this in a good way when they write that every day about 8,200 vehicles roll out of ferry terminals onto Swedish roads. Statistics from Tullverket, the Swedish customs’ authority, show that drunk driving is about twice as common among these vehicles compared to other vehicles. This is a serious problem with a relatively simple solution, gate management processes integrated with breathalyzers at arrival terminals.
Despite this, TV4 states (in Swedish) as recently as May 8 this year (2022) that only 1 out of 46 ports in Sweden has implemented processes for automated sobriety checks.
According to Trafikverket, the Swedish Transport Administration, the problem is that alcohol barriers can be seen as a type of use of force. Further they believe that they lack political instructions on how to circumvent the issue. This leads to that the ports, which in practice are responsible for implementation, have their hands tied as they aren’t getting any support (or expectations laid on them) from authorities nor politicians.
In the port of Trelleborg, which receives about 3,000 cars daily that then continue their routes on Swedish roads, they have, with the help of the police and customs, implemented manual sample checks. A good idea in theory – but a much safer and more scalable solution is of course an automated sobriety check in connection with arrival at the port’s gates. This is something that we at Lup Technologies can offer our customers, and with our previous experience of working with a port in Sweden, we are convinced that we can help Sweden’s ports on the journey.