Are drink drivers finally getting the message?

11th December 2017

Are drink drivers finally getting the message?

With Christmas fast approaching and the party season in full swing, police are once again warning drivers not to take the risk of getting behind the wheel while over the limit.

Specific time slots at Ipswich Magistrates’ Court have been reserved to deal with those caught drink or drug driving, effectively meaning that offenders could lose their licence within 24 hours of being breathalysed.

During last year’s campaign, 1,329 tests were carried out in Suffolk with 142 drivers providing a positive reading.

The annual crackdown comes as figures released by an insurance company appear to show that motorists are getting the message. According to, there has been a 42% decrease in people failing breath tests following accidents over the last decade.

Meanwhile, figures from the Department for Transport show that the number of people seriously hurt or killed in crashes in which alcohol played a part is at a three-year high.

The study found that drink driving is more prevalent on rural roads, while breath tests carried out in the early hours of Sunday morning were the most likely to be positive. More than a fifth of motorists admitted to driving the morning after drinking.

How much can you safely drink?

In England and Wales, the legal limit for drivers is 80 mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood, or 35 mg of alcohol per 100ml of breath.

As a general guide it takes around two hours for a pint of beer to leave your system although stronger brands and ciders will take longer.

A large glass of wine (250ml) is still in the blood for four hours and a single measure of a spirit takes just one hour. You also need to add on an hour for the alcohol to be absorbed into the system, so if you have four pints and stop drinking at midnight, you’re not safe to drive until at least 9am – a bottle of wine and you have to wait until 1pm the next day.

There are other factors at play – your size, age, metabolism, when and how much you’ve eaten and stress levels are all part of the equation.

How can Gotelee help?

The best way to ensure you’re safe behind the wheel is not to drink at all and, after many years of experience in the criminal courts across the country, that is the advice that our criminal law team give. If despite that advice you, or someone you know, find themselves under investigation for an offence this Christmas then call us. We do not judge and will always advise on the options available to achieve the best outcome.

To find out more about how we can help you, contact us on 01473 298141.

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