MOSCOW, June 11 (RAPSI) – The Federation Council, the upper house of Russian parliament, on Tuesday approved a bill toughening punishment up to 15 years in prison for drunken-driving traffic accidents leading to death or injuries.

The lower house of parliament, the State Duma, passed the initiative on May 30.

The draft law practically equates drunken-driving accidents with intended killing. Amendments are proposed to the Russian Criminal Code.

According to the bill, if drivers under the influence of alcohol caused a road traffic accident that resulted in anybody’s grievous bodily harm, they would face community service for up to 5 years or imprisonment of up to 7 years.

At present, these crimes are punishable by community service for up to 3 years or prison sentence of up to 4 years.

Sentence for drunken-driving traffic fatalities will be also toughened.

If there is one victim in such an accident, a driver, who caused it, would face imprisonment up to 12 years instead of current maximum term of 7 years.

In case two or more people die in a drunken-driving accident, a guilty person will face up to 15 years in prison. Currently, such crimes are punished with prison terms ranging from 4 to 9 years.

Sanctions for committing similar offences in a state of intoxication on railway, in the air, in the sphere of marine and inland water transport is expected to be toughened as well.