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Christmas is a stressful time.  The search for the perfect gift.  The travelling to spend time with our families – whether we want to or not.  During this period it seems more socially acceptable to have a wee drink at any time of day – even possibly before we drive home.  Who wants to get a taxi at this time of year, especially at those prices?!

Autotrader just released an article where a survey found that nearly 8 MILLION people would consider driving when over the limit – despite more than half feeling more at risk from drink drivers at Christmas than at any other time of the year (see here for the full article).

As I said Christmas is a stressful time. Do we really want to add to that stress by being involved in an accident because of ours or someone else’s carelessness?

What’s the worst thing that could happen?  Obviously there’s the risk of being caught drink driving- and the associated shame and financial costs incurred, not to mention the inconvenience of not being allowed to drive.  But what else?

19% of drivers would apparently be willing to risk their licence by drink driving this Christmas.  19%!   What the survey SHOULD say is ‘19% would willingly risk their lives and the lives of those around them by drink driving this Christmas’ – or ‘19% underestimate the carnage and destruction caused by drink driving’.

You may think I am being harsh or pessimistic (although I think the Police, Fire and Ambulance services would beg to differ) but this is the reality of when you choose to say, “I’m fine, I only had a couple.”  You not only put your own life at risk,  but also the lives of any loved ones in your car, and any innocent bystander you pass.

Research has shown that even after just one drink you are three times as likely to be involved in an accident.  With 1 in 6 of all road deaths are caused by drink driving, it’s astonishing that such a high percentage of the driving population do not perceive there to be any risk associated with it.

So what advice do we share then?  Obviously, if you are going to drive, do not drink alcohol.   As Autotrader has said, stick to the soft drinks.

But if you have organised a taxi – what about the morning after?  Allow enough time for that alcohol to pass, make sure you are back down to ZERO before you start that journey – use an accurate and reliable breathalyzer to ensure you are NOT part of the 20% of UK drivers convicted the morning after.

We want you to be safe.  But we are selfish – we also want ourselves and our loved ones to be safe from those who might push the boundaries.

The only safe limit is zero. Make sure that you are free of alcohol, both on the night and the morning after.