Crime Prevention by Strengthening REGULATIONS on Drunk Driving

By. Kwanghyun Park Views. 1542


Purpose: The purpose of this study is to discuss the countermeasures against drunk driving regulations in terms of crime prevention because drunk driving is not a simple traffic crime but a potential murder. One methodology would be to raise the punishment for drunk driving and to improve the public's awareness and conduct regular traffic accident prevention education so that fundamental problems can be solved and have high efficiency and normative power. In Korea, the ‘Act on the Aggravated Punishment of Specific Crimes, etc.’ and ‘Road Traffic Act’ were amended in Korea following the case of 'Yoon Chang-ho', who died in a drunk driving accident in 2018. Drunk driving is a very dangerous behavior, as it can endanger your life as well as the lives of others. Even if an accident does not occur, such an act is a violation of the Road Traffic Act and therefore carries criminal responsibility. In terms of general crime prevention, the penalties for drunk driving are becoming stricter than in the past. In the improved system, even if the blood alcohol level is 0.03% or more and less than 0.08, imprisonment for not more than one year or a fine of not more than 5 million won is imposed. In the case of two or more violations of the strengthened regulations, imprisonment for not less than 2 years and not more than 5 years, or a fine of not less than 10 million won and not more than 20 million won. What used to be a three-out was changed to a two-out for drunk driving. However on November 25, 2021, the Constitutional Court ruled that the provisions of the Road Traffic Act, which required uniform and aggravated punishments for drunk driving more than twice, were against the Constitution(Constitutional Court 2021.11.25, 2019Hunba 446, etc.). In addition, if you injure a person while driving, you will be punished by imprisonment for not less than 1 year and not more than 15 years in prison, or a fine of not less than 10 million won to not more than 30 million won(Before the amendment, in case of death while driving under the influence of alcohol, he was sentenced to fixed-term imprisonment of more than one year). Drunk driving accidents can lead to criminal punishment, administrative sanctions, and even civil lawsuits. Keep in mind that drunk driving can be a potential killer on the road. Even if you didn't harm anyone, just drinking and driving can be a big hit in society.

Method: Injuries and deaths due to drunk driving are on the rise. As a countermeasure against this, the standards and level of punishment for drunk driving are being strengthened. First, let's look at the legal punishment for drunk driving through the laws related to drunk driving. Second, we examine the severity of the damage caused by drunk driving through statistics such as drunk driving accidents, injuries, and deaths in current Korean society. Third, as a comparative legal review, by examining foreign laws on drunk driving accidents, matters to be referred to in Korean laws and regulations are reviewed. Fourth, I would like to make a legislative proposal by reviewing the problems and improvement plans of the drunk driving legal system. Previous studies on drunk driving have mainly focused on strengthening the punishment for drunk driving. This study intends to review the general crime prevention aspect by not only strengthening punishment but also changing the public's perception through education.

Results: Drunk driving affects not only drunk drivers, but also others and society. It is necessary to keep in mind that drunk driving is a potential homicide, and the prohibition of drunk driving should be strengthened. In addition, if the general prevention effect can be successfully established and nudged against the offenses of drunk drivers, social costs can be reduced.

Conclusion: For drunk driving, both the ‘external motivation’ such as punishment, as well as the ‘intrinsic motivation’ to act in compliance with the norm must be activated. To this end, it is necessary to raise awareness that drunk driving must be caught and punished. The certainty of punishment has a positive effect on crime deterrence. Also, in the case of self-driving cars in the era of the 4th industrial revolution, there are no regulations for drunk drivers, so a review should be carried out.

[Keywords] Drunk Driving, Crime Prevention, Road Traffic Act, Blood Alcohol Concentration, Criminal Liability


[1] Park K. Legal Countermeasures against Hate Speech. Regulations, 6(2), 16-25 (2021). [Article]
[2] Lee S & Beak S & Jo S. A Study on Role Conflict of Korean Security Police -Focusing on Working Period-. Regulations, 6(1), 43-54 (2021). [Article]
[3] Kim H. A Study on Crime Prevention and Policing in Korea’s Urban Regeneration. International Journal of Police and Policing, 3(2), 6-12 (2018).  [Article]
[5] Kim H. A Study on an Autonomous Committee for Countermeasures against School Violence for Crime Prevention. International Journal of Criminal Study, 4(1), 7-13 (2019). [Article]
[7] Kim JG. A Comparative Study on Implied Consent Law in the US and Crime of Refusal to Take a Breath Test in Korea -Focusing on Constitutionality-. Study on the American Constitution, 30(3), 53-82 (2019).
[8] Kwon BW. Prerequisite Conditions for Drink-driving Punishment to be Effectively Enforced as a Social Norm: Lessons from Statistical Analysis and Behavioral Economics. Korean Journal of Law and Economics, 17(1), 55-136 (2020).
[9] Park CK. Reasonable Countermeasure on Sobriety Test Disobedience Offense Application. Korean Criminological Review, 22(3), 139-173 (2011).
[10] Kim JK. A Study on the Traffic Crime Handling System in the United States. Chonbuk Law Review, 62, 151-179 (2020).
[11] Kim SH. A Study on the Effectiveness of the Cognitive-action Program for Drunk Drivers. Mental Health & Social Work, 11, 157-183 (2004).
[15] Becker GS. Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach. Journal of Political Economy, 76(2), 169-217 (1968).
[16] Jung CW. A Study on DWI(Driving While Intoxicated) Deterrence through Categorizing Factors and Analysing Their Impacts to the Sentencing of DWI Offending. The Journal of Police Science 12(3), 260-261 (2012).
[17] Yoon YS. A Critical Review on the Crime of Drunken Driving -Focused on the Legislative Improvement Alternatives-. Dong-a Law Review, 84, 147-176 (2019).
[18] Oh S. A Study on Response System against Sexual Violence Crime Via IOT-based Smart Devices. International Journal of Police and Policing, 5(1), 30-38 (2020). [Article]
[19] Kim HG. Legal Issues Regarding the Introduction of an Alcohol Ignition Interlock Program. Seoul Law Review, 26(4), 187-222 (2019).
[20] Park YS. The Depression Effects of Additional Punishment for Habitual Drunk Drivers on Traffic Accidents. Korean Police Studies Review, 16(3), 133-134 (2017).
[21] Lee JD & Lim YS. A Study on the Operation and Improvement of Citizen Patrol for Voluntary Crime Prevention. Korean Police Studies Review, 10(2), 177-198 (2011).
[22] Jung SJ. A Study on Assuring the Effectiveness of Volunteer Patrol Activities. The Korean Association of Police Science Review, 10(2), 177-198 (2011).
[23] Hwang HR. A Study of Law Policy for Police Volunteer Enactment. Hanyang Law Review, 36, 435-460 (2011).
[24] Kim DS. A Study on the Autonomous Vehicles in Terms of the Criminal Law. Seoul Law Review, 28(1), 283-315 (2020).
[25] Nam J. Measures to Revitalize Resident Participation in the Self-governing Police System. Regulations, 6(3), 29-38 (2021). [Article]
[26] Park HS. A Study on the Effectiveness of DUI(Driving Under the Influence) Alcohol Treatment Program. Journal of the Korea Society of Computer and Information, 24(10), 215-216 (2019).
[27] Noh HC. Legitimacy of Disposition of Ex Officio and Dismissal of a Police Officer Appointed by the City Council for Causing a Drunk Driving Traffic Accident. Journal of Labour Law, 69, 268-272 (2019).
[28] Kim NH. A Study on the Analyzing Errors of the Breath Alcohol Testing Device. The Journal of Police Science, 3, 84-113 (2002).
[29] Kim SK. Several Problems on Estimation of Blood Alcohol Content By Widmark Formula. Journal of Legal Studies, 44(1), 198-199 (2020).
[30] Lee YJ. A Study on the Nature and Applicable Range of Widmark Equation. Journal of Police & Law, 6(1), 123-125 (2008).

[6] Kim SK. Study on the Preventive Policy for Drunken Driving. Chungang University, Doctoral Thesis (2020).
[12] Lee SH. Study on the Intervention Program for DUI Students. Chonbuk National University, Master's Thesis (2015).
[13] Ryu JI. Study on Efficiency of Education/PR Program for Decrease in Drunken Driving. Yonsei University, Master's Thesis (2008).

[14] Beccaria C. Dei Delitti e Delle Pene. Torrossa (2009).

[4] (2017).
[31] (2021).

? Source: