Hundreds of drink drivers stay on roads after escaping ‘automatic’ ban

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Hundreds of convicted drink-drivers still have a licence to drive.

Of 55,539 people convicted of drink-driving last year, 1,480 were not disqualified from driving, a freedom of information request from insurance company LV= showed. The statistics also showed that 2.6 per cent of drink-drivers re-offend within one year.

The City of London and Suffolk are the most “lenient” districts, with 4.7 per cent of drink-drivers escaping disqualification.

In contrast, only 1.3 per cent of offenders in Cumbria and Warwickshire fail to be disqualified.

LV= published results of a survey of 2,033 adults which showed that 65 per cent know someone who drives after consuming alcohol.

And 24 per cent knew people who drive even after having enough to put them over the legal alcohol limit. This average national figure of 24 per cent compares with one as high as 36 per cent for those in the West Midlands.

LV= car insurance managing director Selwyn Fernandes said: “Driving while under the influence of alcohol is a serious offence and leads to automatic disqualification in the majority of cases.

“Few people realise how little it takes to compromise their driving ability and underestimate how much alcohol affects them. As we approach the Christmas party season, it is imperative that drivers know their legal limit and stick to it.”