Personal Injury

Football fans at risk of drink drive own goal

3 minutes

Shelley Schubert, July 08, 2021

As England fans prepare to roar their team to victory in Sunday’s Euro 2020 final a survey suggests many could risk falling foul of drink drive rules if they aren’t careful.

Research commissioned by First4Lawyers, shows that nine out of 10 motorists (91 per cent) don’t know what the drink drive limit is and almost half aren’t sure how many units there are in their favourite tipple.

Equally concerning is the fact that almost a third (32 per cent) admit to having consumed alcohol before getting behind the wheel and one in five (21 per cent) admit to getting behind the wheel knowing they were over the limit.

Qamar Anwar, managing director of First4Lawyers said: “Any fan looking to go out and support England this weekend needs to think twice before stepping into a car if they have had a drink.

“In the midst of all the excitement around the Euros and pubs staying open later for the final on Sunday, it could be tempting to have a few drinks before getting behind the wheel, but it’s just not worth the risk. Road vehicles really are potentially lethal, and we would urge people to think twice before they do so.”

Researchers, who polled 2,000 UK drivers, found sixty-four per cent of motorists are confident they know what the alcohol driving limit is, yet only 9 per cent actually know what it is.

In England, Wales, and Northern Ireland, the alcohol limit for drivers is 80 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood – and for Scotland it is 50 milligrammes.

Only eight per cent of those surveyed correctly stated the England, Wales, and Northern Ireland limit and 10 per cent, the Scottish limit. Although, reassuringly, most thought the threshold was lower.

More than a third (36 per cent) admitted they don't know for sure what the alcohol limit is.

It also emerged that many of those polled aren’t entirely certain how many units are in a pint of beer (46 per cent), a glass of wine (50 per cent) or a measure of spirits (53 per cent).

Along with the research, the legal marketing collective has also created an interactive driver attitudes and aptitudes test where motorists can find out how safe a road user they are. 

Qamar Anwar added: “The research shows the vast majority of drivers are safe and take a sensible approach by choosing not to drink alcohol before getting behind the wheel, but it’s really worrying to think that so many are prepared to drink and then drive, whilst not clearly understanding what the limit is.

“By taking this unnecessary risk they could face a fine, a ban from driving, or far worse. They are not only putting their own lives at risk, but the lives of those around them too. The consequences of their actions could be catastrophic.”

Age is a factor when it comes to those most likely to risk drinking and driving, with those aged 25 to 34 most likely to consume alcohol before getting behind the wheel (39 per cent). However, it was motorists aged 17 to 24 who were most likely to exceed the alcohol limit before taking to the road (20 per cent).

Collectively, this may explain why seven in 10 think motorists shouldn’t be able to drink any booze before driving.

Carried out through OnePoll, the study found three in 10 drivers (30 per cent) believe UK roads are not safe to drive on, with one in three (33 per cent) worrying about being involved in an accident when driving.

More than a quarter (27 per cent) have been in an accident where they were the driver during the past five years. Almost one third (32 per cent) have received three or more points on their licence, with more than one in ten having either been banned from driving (6 per cent) or having appeared in court in relation to a driving offence (5 per cent).

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