Motorists want to see drop in drink-drive limit, new survey reveals

By Ryan Hirons

Motorists in England and Wales want to see a drop in the legal drink-drive limit — introduced in 1967 — a new survey has revealed.

Conducted by motoring services company RAC, the research quizzed 1,727 drivers on their views of drink-driving. It revealed 38 per cent of drivers would like to see the English and Welsh drink-drive limit drop to 50mg of alcohol, with 21 per cent even going so far to say it should drop to 20mg. The current limit is 80mg of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood.

Scotland introduced a 50mg limit in December 2014, with Northern Ireland currently doing the same.


Drink-driving was fifth in a list of 23 common motoring concerns cited in the research, with 24 per cent of drivers ranking it in their top four.

Data from Police Scotland revealed that nine months after the introduction of the lower alcohol limit, the number of drink-driving offences fell by 12.5 per cent compared to the same period the previous year, from 4,208 to 3,682.

Pete Williams, a road safety spokesman for RAC, said: “Motorists are overwhelmingly in favour of reducing the current drink-drive limit in England and Wales to no more than 50mg as Scotland has already done and Northern Ireland is doing.


“Fifty years after the drink-drive limit became law, it is time for the Government to move with the times and fall in line with the large sway of other countries which enforce a 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood limit with the aim of cutting the number of accidents that occur due to drivers being under the influence of alcohol.

“Can we really afford not to follow the majority who operate a 50mg limit if there is even the slightest chance that it will lead to fewer lives being lost or ruined?”

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