The level of drink-drive related accident has risen for the first time in 10 years, according to new figures.
Department for Transport (DfT) records show that 3,450 drivers failed the drink-driving breath test in 2015 – up from 3,227 in 2014. Previously, the levels had dropped every year from a high of 6,397 in 2005.
Alcohol increases likelihood of fatal
Lucy Amos, a spokeswoman for road safety charity Brake, described the figures as “disappointing”.
She said: “Any amount of alcohol, even amounts below our current drink-drive limit, increases the likelihood of a driver being involved in a fatal crash.”
The charity now wants more effective enforcement of the laws along with more appropriate penalties so that drink-drivers will expect to be punished severely for being over the limit.
‘Only safe amount of alcohol for drivers is none’
The legal levels differ between Scotland and England and Wales. Drivers north of the border only allowed 50mg per 100ml of blood compared to 80mg for England and Wales.
Ms Amos added: “We need to get the message across that the only safe amount of alcohol when driving is none, and we are calling on all drivers to pledge not to drink a drop before getting behind the wheel.”
There’s also been no significant reduction in traffic accident fatalities since 2011, with 1,730 killed on Britain’s roads in 2015, down just 45 on the previous year.
A department spokesman says officials are working with safety groups on “common sense proposals” that balance tougher penalties for dangerous driving with help for road users to stay safe.
Date Published: October 18, 2016
Author: Jonathan Brown