Government announces drink-drive limit won’t be lowered – Brake reaction
The Government has also stated that it will consider making it a specific offence to drive on drugs, removing the need to prove impairment, and that it will introduce roadside drugs testing devices as soon as possible.
In response, Brake says it welcomes the move to introduce roadside drugs testing, and urges the Government to implement a specific drug driving offence without delay.
However, it adds that it is bitterly disappointed that the Government has failed to listen to the evidence showing that lowering the drink-drive limit and implementing random breath testing would be effective in cutting casualties.
The organisation advocates a drink-drive limit of 20mg per 100ml blood (currently 80mg/100ml blood) and says this "zero tolerance" approach would send out a clear message. It adds that there is widespread support for this lower limit, as well as international evidence that it would be a positive step in tackling drink-drive deaths and injuries.
About one in six road deaths are caused by drink drivers. In 2009, there were were seven deaths and 28 serious injuries every week in Britain caused by drink drivers who were over the limit. More deaths, estimated at 65 a year, are caused by drivers who have between 50-80mg of alcohol per 100ml blood.
Julie Townsend, campaigns director at Brake, said: 'We must not forget that drink-driving remains one of the biggest killers on our roads. It’s therefore bitterly disappointing that the Government has chosen to ignore evidence showing that lowering our drink drive limit and implementing random breath-testing would be highly effective in cutting these tragic, costly and preventable casualties.
'Quite simply, we need a zero tolerance approach to drink driving – including a lower limit, and far more breath-testing – if we are to stamp out this deadly menace once and for all.'