Northern Ireland plans to reduce drink-driving limits

Capodecina
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Alex Attwoo, the Northern Ireland environment minister has suggested that he wants to cut the blood alcohol limit from the current level of 80mg/100ml to 50mg/100ml and to introduce a still lower limit of 20mg/100ml for young drivers and people who earn their living from driving.

Why can't we lower the limit in the UK?

I know that some young male speed-freaks with hot-hatches and our resident alcoholic benefit cheat will assert that they drive less badly and inconsiderately when they are off their heads but unfortunately it is all too often some other poor unfortunate who gets to prove that they are wrong as usual.
 

RDM

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Not sure about you, but if I am driving then I tend not to have anything alcoholic to drink at all so it doesn't really matter what the drink drive limit is set to from a personal point of view.

However, is there any evidence to suggest that reducing the drink drive limits will have any real impact on road safety?
 

RDM

RDM

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Having looked into Attwood's proposals a little further:

BBC said:
Mr Attwood also wants to give police powers to randomly stop drivers without the need for reasonable suspicion.

Not really sure I agree with that one to be honest.

Also the lower limit for young drivers and "people who make their living from driving" could be problematic to enforce and may stray into age discrimination territory.
 

Aod

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Not sure about you, but if I am driving then I tend not to have anything alcoholic to drink at all so it doesn't really matter what the drink drive limit is set to from a personal point of view.

I know people who go "well, you metabolise one unit an hour, so i can drink two pints of cider now and still be legal to drive in four hours" :rolleyes:

I'm all for lower-BAC limits.
 
Soldato
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yay more people being given penalty points while doing 5MPH on their way to work at christmas.... so ******* annoying......

:(

this is the main reason for such a change. 80 mg is already small enough this is just to catch people at christmas time the morning after in the crawl to work traffic jams.
 
Soldato
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I am ashamed to say I couldn't tell you what the legal limit is. It seems hard to actually find out. Google gives varying amounts. I have always (since I have ever drunk) had 1 pint of beer OR 1 glass of wine OR 1 shot and mixer. I simply stick to the 1 of anything rule (obviously not some silly strong drink). Occasionally I will have 2 drinks if I know I won't drive for hours and having a meal as well. I've been breathalised 2-3 times and every time passed (having had a drink as above).
 
Caporegime
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I am ashamed to say I couldn't tell you what the legal limit is. It seems hard to actually find out. Google gives varying amounts. I have always (since I have ever drunk) had 1 pint of beer OR 1 glass of wine OR 1 shot and mixer. I simply stick to the 1 of anything rule (obviously not some silly strong drink). Occasionally I will have 2 drinks if I know I won't drive for hours and having a meal as well. I've been breathalised 2-3 times and every time passed (having had a drink as above).

The limit isn't measured in drinks, and any such "limits" would be guidelines at best. The limit is 80mg/100ml of blood, I believe, and as such your tolerance depends on your blood volume, your metabolism, etc.
 
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We're not as tough as the rest of Europe:

The Blood Alcohol Levels

0.0 mg per ml– Estonia, Malta, Romania, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Hungary
0.2 mg per ml– Norway, Poland, Sweden
0.4 mg per ml- Lithuania
0.5 mg per ml- Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany (Germany is 0.3 if you’re in an accident), Finland, France, Greece, Italy, Serbia/Montenegro, Croatia, Latvia, Macedonia, Netherlands, Austria, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, Cyprus (North)
0.8 mg per ml– UK, Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, Switzerland
0.9 mg per mlCyprus (South)

Don't see any reason why the whole of the UK shouldn't come down to 0.5.
 
Man of Honour
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I presume that NI is as bad as Ireland?

The rate of detection in Ireland for drink-driving was the highest among the states surveyed and more than seven times the European average.

More than 13% of motorists tested here during the operation were above the legal drink-driving limit compared to the European average of just under 2%.

The rate in Britain was 5.5%. and in Poland it was just 1.4%.


Read more: http://www.irishexaminer.com/ireland/drink-drive-detection-7-times-eu-rate-162873.html#ixzz1Z4BoILGZ
 
Man of Honour
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Change it to new drivers rather than young drivers, like within 5 years of passing or something. Same result, without the discrimination.

That's somewhat arguable, it might remove the overt discrimination but it could still be effective discrimination given that the majority of new drivers will be young. Suppose for some reason I didn't want to employ women then if I put a requirement in a job advert whereby applicants must be 180cm+ tall then I've effectively cut out a huge proportion of women from the job yet cut out a comparatively smaller amount of men and this isn't overt sex discrimination - sometimes the effect and the aim is as important as the method in judging it.

I've got no particular issues with reducing the BAC limit but why pick on the young? If you're going to do it then why not make it the same for all and leave it at that? However while I see little reason not to reduce the limit I'd like to see if there's any evidence to support such a reduction in terms of harm being lessened.
 
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