Alcohol Talking

Alcohol is a confidence booster that can trick you in to thinking you’re safe to drive when in fact you’re far from it!

Somerset Road Safety’s summer drink drive campaign ‘Alcohol Talking’ aims to highlight the fact that alcohol consumption can lead to increased levels of risk taking, and how this greater acceptance toward risk can have fatal consequences when combined with driving/riding on the nation’s roads.

Many people go out for a drink with the best intentions of leaving the car behind and getting home safely, but after a few drinks and with an increased tolerance toward risk the common sense approach to getting home safely can seem overly cautious. If all you want to do is get home the temptation to risk it and drive can become very persuasive and your brain is good at thinking up supposedly valid reasons as to why you’ll be safe to drive.

 

 

‘I know my limits’

‘I’m only nipping down the road’

‘It’ll be fine the roads are quiet at this time of night’

These are all common excuses people use for driving after drinking and it can be difficult to ignore what your brain is telling you to do, but just remember that this is the ‘alcohol talking’ so don’t listen to these arguments, as tempting as they may sound, and stick to your original plan of getting home safely. It can be difficult to combat these thoughts when you’re not thinking clearly so the best way to avoid it happening is to plan ahead. Our top tips to avoid drink driving are as follows:

  • Designate a driver before you go out
  • Pre book a taxi to get home safely
  • Remove the temptation to drive by leaving the car at home
  • Progamme some local taxi firm numbers on to your phone
  • Charge your phone before leaving to ensure you can call for a lift home if required
  • Download taxi apps to your phone
  • Check public transport times before going out

 

 

In 2016 there were 240 fatalities on the road attributed to drink-driving, a figure that we are keen to help reduce. You may think you know your limits and how much you can drink while still being safe to drive, however, the likelihood is you’re wrong. You may not realise it but it only takes one alcoholic drink to begin to affect your ability to drive safely, and alcohol can affect you differently depending on a number of factors that include:

  • weight
  • age
  • sex and metabolism (the rate your body uses energy)
  • what you’ve eaten recently
  • the type and amount of alcohol you’re drinking
  • stress levels

It’s also important to remember that alcohol can linger in the blood stream for far longer than you may realise and it’s possible to still be over the legal limit to drive the morning after a night out drinking.

If you’re convicted of drink-driving the penalties are severe and can include:

  • A minimum 12 month driving ban
  • A criminal record
  • A hefty fine
  • Up to 6 months in prison
  • An endorsement on your licence for 11 years

Not only will you face those immediate penalties, but there can be life-affecting knock-on consequences.

  • Your car insurance could go up. Having a criminal record will make it extremely difficult to get any other kind of insurance.
  • Getting into trouble with the law could be seen as gross misconduct by your employer and you could lose your job.
  • Having a criminal record could make it very difficult for you to get another job, and lying to your employer on any kind of application which asks you to disclose any criminal convictions could be seen as fraud and lead to a further conviction.
  • To get a mortgage you have to disclose any unspent convictions.
  • Travelling to a country where you need a visa or a working permit can be very difficult with a criminal record.

We want everyone to enjoy themselves, but at the same time ensure the roads are kept as safe as possible by raising awareness of the dangers of drink-driving, so remember if you’re driving it’s always safer to have none for the road!

 

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