‘Incredibly dangerous’: Drivers warned not to drink drive – arrests highest in August

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New research from Churchill Motor Insurance has found over a fifth of motorists would feel confident driving a vehicle having had an alcoholic drink. Around 36 percent of these, nearly 3.2 million people, have driven with a child in the car.

August has the highest number of drink driving arrests of any month, with an average of 239 every day.

July follows closely with an average of 233 arrests a day and September with 222 a day, based on information from 32 police forces across the UK.

As people are starting to enjoy freedom outside of coronavirus restrictions, there are fears these numbers could skyrocket with bars and clubs open as normal.

Millions of drivers are also expected to hit the roads in the coming weeks and months by travelling to go on holiday, many of which will be driving around the UK.


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“If you are planning to drink, think about how you’ll be travelling home and choose a designated driver – perhaps take it in turns with your friends or partner to make sure you all get home safely.”

In England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the alcohol limit for drivers is 35 micrograms per 100 millilitres of breath, with it being slightly lower in Scotland at 22 micrograms of alcohol.

A third of drivers who would be comfortable driving after drinking admit they would do so after two or more 330ml cans of beer (the equivalent of 3.3 units or more).

Moreover, 25 percent of drivers would have two or more small glasses of wine, which is also the equivalent of 3.3 units or more.

The data also showed London has the highest proportion of people (31 percent) who would feel comfortable driving after drinking, with the West Midlands in second with 27 percent.

The most cautious regions, meanwhile, are Scotland, where they have stricter drink driving laws and where 72 percent of adults say that they would never drive after having consumer alcohol.

This is followed by the North East (67 percent) and Northern Ireland (58 percent).

Drivers can be imprisoned, banned from driving and face a fine if they are found guilty of drink driving.

If a motorist is in charge of a vehicle while above the legal limit or unfit through drink, they may receive three months imprisonment, a fine of up to £2,500 and a possible driving ban.

A driver can expect six months imprisonment, an unlimited fine and a driving ban of at least a year when driving or attempting to drive while above the legal limit.

According to the Department of Transport, 2019 saw a 17 percent rise in drink driving-related deaths on the road, compared to 2018. 

The data showed that between 240 and 320 people were killed on the road in 2019 when one or more driver was found to be over the legal drink-drive limit.

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