posted 7 years ago

Lower Drink-Drive Limit in Scotland

The drink-drive limit in Scotland is to be reduced as soon as possible in an effort to reduce road traffic incidents and save lives

The drink-drive limit in Scotland is to be reduced ‘as soon as possible’. Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill announced plans to lower the limit will be brought forward later this year. As such, the amount of alcohol permitted in motorists' blood will fall from 80mg per 100ml, to only 50mg per 100ml. The objective, of course, is to reduce road traffic incidents and save lives. The lower limit will bring Scotland in-line with many of it’s European friends. These include France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Austria, Belgium, and the Netherlands – all of whom have a 50mg limit. The notable exception is the rest of the United Kingdom, which retains its 80mg policy. Only Cyprus (South) has a higher limit of 100mg per 100ml. As such, there are renewed calls for England, Wales, and Northern Ireland to lower their drink-drive limits.

Police in the UK are currently cracking down on drivers who are over the limit in the morning rush hours, with increased breath testing for the month of June, and the reduction in Scotland will surely set a precedent that the rest of the UK will find it hard to resist. Currently though, the UK Government has no plans to reduce limits for all the countries in its jurisdiction.

Scotland's lower drink-drive limit might catch out motorists. How, after all, can anyone be certain that their blood contains no more than 50mg of alcohol per 100ml? There are self test kits, but some of these are 'less' than accurate. Some might not be. Alternatively, some experts suggest that more than one pint of normal strength beer or one small glass of wine could push motorists over the 50mg limit. The reality, however, is that every driver is different. Factors such as weight, gender, stress levels, age, and metabolism influence how we react to alcohol. The only way to be sure is to avoid booze entirely and of course this is the point.

So remember if you are driving to Scotland later this year, as soon as you cross that border, the rules change. Be safe.

Police launch morning drink drive checks


Typical Scottish parliment stunt. The lattest word is if you are over 50Mg but below 80mg the punishment will be less!! The solution to resolving DD spot checks, if you are over the limit 5 year ban no discussion, regardless of your job or financial backing to employ a good lawyer. To bad if you loose you job you were over a fair and generour limit.

People who flout the 80mg limit will flout a 50mg limit so no safety benefit there. If it can be shown drivers above 50mg but below 80mg have a statistically significant greater chance of having an accident then a lowering of the limit would unarguably be justified. Until then give the hospitality industry a chance and stop interfering with peoples pleasure. Knee-jerk politics.

I belive the alcohol limit in Englad, is 35mg/100ml

It would be interesting to see some statistics on how many accidents and injuries there are for people having blood alcohol of 0, 50, 80 and greater than 80mg/100ml so we can judge the accuracy of the assertion that this will "reduce traffic incidents and save lives".

about time this new law was brought in,if you drink and drive you face the law and thats that.

In all farness those thick enough to DDrive normally TTotal their chav wagons on bends or roundabouts and if ur lucky enough there not wearing a belt and quids in there is one less retard on the road. No offense but i am very black and white on situations like this. Not only that i have broke. Each F**king alloy this year on these so called roads - more like dirt tracks. No to mention petrol being so expensive i had contaminated fuel. On goverment stop pissing our many on bull shit and get to the good stuff. A system is in Place its good enough.

I'm looking forward to all the hundreds of lives that will be saved by reducing the limit by the equivalent of a half pint of beer. How much time and energy is the parliament spending on this ? Isn't there a thousand more pressing things they could be addressing?

thats the last time i go on hliday in scotland

I fully agree with the proposal and have no issue with it. There is a simple answer though as to why it cannot be ZERO and that is we all make alcohol in our body and so someone who was tea total would produce a reading. This is indeed why in the UK at the moment the limit is 35 but you have to be above 39 to be prosecuted. This reason does not preclude it from being lower but not zero.

It is worth pointing out that in Europe although the levels are lower, the penalties are less stringent at these levels.

I fully agree but why not make it ZERO?

Fully supportive of this move : The answer is simple "don't drink and drive" The majority of people agree with and have no problem with it

Totally agree about people being different. Education, not punishment is the only way to lower drink driving deaths. I know people who I would trust to drive after three pints and some that I wouldn't trust to drive after a months abstinence... Perhaps a decent cognitive test would work better than a breath machine, it would certainly encourage people to question their own fitness to drive be it through drink, drugs or tiredness.perhaps with time people may start taking responsibility for their own actions and we can do away with this silly nanny state attitude...

As Stephen Turvil's article states 'Every driver is different etc......the only way to be sure is to avoid booze entirely and of course this is the point' The most important and key question is 'for how long before does one need to refrain before it is safe to drive to drive? NObody seems able to answer this and the only acceptable judge seems to be the police alcometer - we none of us know how capable we are and this is quite unsatisfactory: the sooner we can all have an accepted means of satisfying ourselves on our own individual fitness to drive the better.

Where is the evidence that large numbers of road deaths in Scotland are caused by drivers with less than 80mg / 100ml but more than 50mg / 100ml of alcohol in their blood. If there is no evidence of this problem it is just a publicity stunt to look as if they are doing something. I would suggest the problem of excessive drink and drug use contributing to road deaths is drivers who habitually break the current laws, this would have no effect on those individuals.

Should change the limits for the whole country straight away. Why on earth has it not been done sooner. There is also the problem of drug taking before driving too to look at.