GEM praises Scottish Government decision to reduce drink drive limit in time for Christmas

Posted on December 1st, 2014 by GEM Motoring Assist

ROAD SAFETY organisation GEM Motoring Assist has praised the Scottish Government’s efforts to bring about a reduction in the drink drive limit. As of this Friday (5 December), a new limit of 50mg in every 100ml of blood will apply across Scotland.

GEM chief executive David Williams comments: “Research shows that reducing drink drive limits is effective in reducing deaths and injuries. What’s more, the move at this time of year brings a welcome opportunity to highlight the dangers of drinking and driving.

“There is sound logic and good research to back the reduction. For example, the introduction of a 20mg limit in Sweden reduced fatal crashes by 9.7%, with a 7.5% reduction in all crashes. Additionally, the lower limit reduced crashes among drivers who were the most serious drink-driving offenders. So even drivers causing accidents who were found to be well above the limit reduced after the introduction of the ban.1

“We would like to see the rest of the UK follow Scotland’s example.”

The new limit brings Scotland into line with most of Europe. The limit in the remainder of the UK is 80mg. Only Malta shares the same limit. Northern Ireland is considering making the same reduction as Scotland.2

David Williams warns that reducing the drink drive limit doesn’t mean it’s now acceptable to drive after drinking slightly less alcohol.

“It’s worth noting that even at the new, lower limit, you are three times more likely to die in a crash than if you had taken no alcohol. That’s why GEM has always supported the policy that if you need to drive, don’t drink any alcohol,” he concludes.