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Animal Behaviour - Dog

Drink-drive deaths increase in 2012

It's that time of year again when drink-driving comes into sharp focus...or should we say slightly blurred focus. After the lowest death rate for drink-drive collisions in 2011 for years, the figures for 2012 have shown a worrying increase. This spike in  fatalities from 220 in 2011 to 250 in 2012 is a stark reminder that we must not become complacent in spreading the message to students about the dangers of driving a vehicle after consuming alcohol.

A survey by the Road Safety Charity Brake revealed that an astounding 3 out of every 10 young people are willing to gamble their lives and that of their friends by taking to the wheel after consuming alcohol. An even higher proportion thought that driving the morning after a heavy night was fine. Clearly the constant reminders are needed and as ADI's you are perfectly placed to intervene.

Key information.

  • Alcohol is a factor in one in five road deaths
  • Drink driving traffic collisions are still a leading cause of alcohol related
  • deaths among young men aged 16-24.

How does alcohol affect driving skills?

  • slows your brain function and reaction times by 10 to 30%.
  • causes blurring and loss of vital peripheral vision and a 25% reduction in the ability to judge distance and speed.
  • makes you over-confident and reduces the perception of risk.
  • for young people the accident risk increases after one drink; after two iit doubles and after five it can have increased tenfold.
  • alcohol has exactly the same effect whether neat or with a mixer.
  • measures are usually bigger when you pour your drinks at home.

The morning after

How much have you drunk, when did you stop drinking, and when
do you plan to drive? These are crucial questions to answer if you want
to remain safe and legal to drive – and avoid a drink drive conviction or
being responsible for the injury or death of another road user. Alcohol
stays in your system longer than you think. If in doubt, don’t drive.
Even if all of the alcohol has left your system it can still be dangerous
to drive with a hangover. Tiredness and feeling unwell can also affect
your concentration and reaction times.

The law and punishments?

Anyone caught drink driving will be banned from the road for at least 12
months, and fined up to £5,000. Refusing to provide a breath test will
result in a minimum 12 month ban and a fine. You can also be sent to
prison .

Causing death by careless driving can lead to 14 years imprisonment, an unlimited fine, a ban from driving for at least 2 years and an extended driving test before your licence is returned.

Make sure that you are giving these life saving messages to your students during festive period and beyond.

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