The motor policy considered in Bantho v Alexander Forbes Insurance Co Ltd excluded an indemnity if the accident occurred while the driver was driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor or while the level of alcohol in the bloodstream exceeded the statutory limit. The court applied the exclusion despite a dispute about the accuracy of the blood test.
The blood test showed that the driver was above the limit but there was a dispute as to whether the blood sample had been taken within two hours of the event as required by the National Road Traffic Act.
The court noted that this was a civil case and even though the exact time of the accident was not established, the evidence available to the court regarding the way in which the collision occurred, coupled with the absence of a reasonable explanation by the plaintiff as to why and how the accident occurred warranted the conclusion that the driver was under the influence of alcohol. In this case the vehicle had left the road without any explanation forthcoming as to why that occurred.
The case is Bantho v Alexander Forbes Insurance Co Ltd.