A county in Ireland has passed a bill that allows drivers in rural areas to legally drive under the influence of alcohol.
The council in County Kerry, southwest Ireland, reportedly voted five to three - with 12 members absent and seven abstaining - to allow the issuing of special permits to those who live in rural areas and need to drive home after consuming two to three drinks.
The idea came from Danny Healy-Rae, the owner of a pub in County Kerry. Healy-Rae argued that individuals driving while intoxicated in rural areas have never killed anyone. He added that the bill would prevent loneliness and reduce the risk of suicides.
"A lot of these people are living in isolated rural areas where there's no public transport of any kind, and they end up at home looking at the four walls, night in and night out, because they don't want to take the risk of losing their licence," Healy-Rae told TheJournal.ie.
The country's Department of Transport and road safety initiatives have voiced opposition to the bill.
"Unfortunately, rural areas are among the most dangerous roads in Ireland. We need to be looking at how to make our roads safer, particularly in rural areas, instead of trying to reverse existing measures, which are clearly working," a spokesperson for the Irish Department of Transport told Sky News.
The bill is not yet law, and will first have to be passed by the country's justice minister.