As Christmas approaches, the government, police forces and other road safety organisations are launching their annual drink-driving campaigns.
RoSPA’s position is simple – the only safe limit is zero, and all drivers should refrain from drinking alcohol if they are driving.
This year, we’re supporting the Department for Transport’s (DfT) latest THINK! Christmas drink-drive campaign, which is targeting young men aged 17-24 with the message that “mates don’t let mates drink-drive.”
Being the designated driver on a night out over the party season can be a topic of “lad banter”, as dramatised humorously in three DfT THINK! videos being promoted across social media in the run up to Christmas. So, if you’re planning to drink at a festive social event, plan your night out with public transport and local taxi services to get home safely.
The maximum blood alcohol limit in England, Wales and Northern Ireland is 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood (80mg/100ml). In Scotland, it was lowered to 50mg/100ml blood on December 5, 2015, which RoSPA campaigned for.
The 80mg/100ml limit was based on evidence from the 1960s that the likelihood of a road accident rises sharply at and above that level, but later evidence also showed that most drivers are impaired and their risk increases below this limit.
Drivers with a blood alcohol level of between 50mg and 80mg are 2–2.5 times more likely to be involved in an accident than drivers with no alcohol, and up to six times more likely to be involved in a fatal crash. By legislating for a lower limit, the government would set a clear message that a second drink is simply not acceptable, legally or socially.
There were 190 young drivers between the ages of 17 and 24 killed or seriously injured in reported drink-drive accidents in 2016, so keep you and everyone else safe this festive season by not drinking and driving – it’s just not worth it.
If you are tempted to have a drink and drive the consequences can be life changing: https://www.rospa.com/your-stories/october-2016/bob/
Nick Lloyd, acting head of road safety
Posted: 12/10/2018 2:44:43 PM