Driving under the influence of alcohol could earn you a 2-year jail term or attract a Sh100,000 fine or both.

President Uhuru Kenyatta has occasioned this by assenting to the Traffic Amendment Bill, which is meant to streamline the traffic laws of the country.

Tiaty Member of Parliament William Kamket sponsored the bill in parliament.

Under the new rule, any driver convicted of the offence will be handed either of the prescribed penalties or get slapped by both.

Furthermore, convicted felons will have their driving licenses suspended for a minimum of a year as a measure of caution and to drive the point home.

Under the previous regulation, driving under the influence of alcohol only attracted a Sh10,000 fine or a month’s jail term.

This was before the Court of Appeal overturned the same and outlawed the use of breathalysers which are being used to measure the amount of alcohol in one’s system.

Crash with a suspected drunk driver. PHOTO/COURTESY

The regulation also brought a lot of confusion because some offenders and consumers of alcohol argued that the breathalysers only measured the amount of alcohol in their system but not their ability to drive or make a judgement.

However, the law has clarified who a drunk driver is and prescribed the appropriate measures to be taken against such offenders.

“Any person, who when driving or attempting to drive or in charge of a motor vehicle on a road is under the influence of an alcoholic drink or a drug beyond the prescribed limits, shall be guilty of an offence,” the law states.

The controversial breathalysers will only be used for objective tests to quantify scientific implications, including the prescribed limits, and only officers from the National Transport and Safety Authority and Traffic Police Unit will administer the tests.