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Croatian priests' outcry against drink driving zero tolerance

Priests in Croatia want more than $A1.29 million each year in compensation after a new zero tolerance law for drink driving was introduced in the country.

The new law means they can no longer drive between churches after drinking wine during Mass.

The priests previously drove between churches after each service, but after the legal alcohol limit was reduced to zero, they have been forced to find chauffeurs.

Daily newspaper Jutarnji List reports the country's 2000 Catholic priests are now demanding compensation to cover the trouble the law has caused them in hiring new drivers.

One priest told the paper: "We want to obey the law, of course. Therefore we would like to have private drivers. During holy mass we need to drink wine as a symbol of the blood of Christ.

"Some priests have many services a day and these are often in different parishes, so they need to use a car to get around. If they can't drive themselves, someone else has to do it."

Before the new law was passed the priests had officially requested they be made an exception, but the request was rejected.

Priests demand compensation (Ananova)

14 Sep 2004