What's the drink-driving limit and how harsh are the punishments?

Drink-driving is back in the news again after the arrest of TV presenter Ant McPartlin earlier this week. Here is everything you need to know about drinking and driving.

Whats the drink-driving limit?

What is the drink-drive limit?

In England and Wales you are considered over the limit if you have over 80 milligrammes of alcohol per 100ml of blood, 35 microgrammes of alcohol per 100ml of breath and 107 milligrammes of alcohol per 100ml of urine.

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That roughly works out at two small glasses of wine or two pints of lager, but factors such as gender and weight come into play so everyone has different limits.

How does alcohol affect driving?

Drinking changes the way our body functions in a number of ways. The brain takes longer to receive messages from the eye, processing information becomes more difficult and instructions to the body’s muscles are delayed resulting in slower reaction times.

Alcohol can also create blurred and double vision affecting the ability to see things clearly when driving.

What are the punishments?

Drink driving is a serious offence and the punishments reflect that.

Those who do it will be banned from driving for a minimum of 12 months and anyone who is convicted twice in 10 years will see the ban rise to three years.

Offenders could see themselves paying a hefty fine and could be put in prison for up to six months.

After having a drink what are the alternatives to driving?

Public transport is always a good option as well as taxis or catch a lift with a sober friend who can drive you home safely.

Don’t make the mistake of cycling home after a trip to the pub as an offence to use a bike while unfit to ride through drink or drugs.

The best advice for what amount of alcohol is safe to have when driving is to not drink if you are driving.

For more information on drink driving visit www.drinkaware.co.uk