Warning to drink OR drive this Christmas – not both

Warning to drink OR drive this Christmas – not both

Published by The Wessex FM News Team at 10:03am 13th December 2019.

Dorset Police is reminding us not to drink and drive at all over Christmas.

We’re being reminded that if we’re caught under the influence of drink or drugs on the roads there could be serious consequences – like losing our licence within seven days.

Police are stepping up breath tests this festive season, as well as visiting pubs and clubs during the day and evenings with advice about staying safe on the roads this Christmas.

Last December in Dorset there were 94 positive, refused or failed breath tests. 8 of those were the morning after between 5am and noon. 62 were aged 18 -34 and 32 were 35 or older.


Dorset Police advice:

  • Remember you can still be under the influence of alcohol the next morning after drinking
  • Only time eliminates alcohol from your system - not sleep, coffee, a shower or breakfast
  • It takes one hour per unit consumed plus an extra hour from your last drink for alcohol to leave the system and before you should even contemplate driving
  • Neither do you have to be drunk to be drink driver. The ‘legal limit’ set by the breath test is 35 micrograms of alcohol per 100 millilitres of breath, but even if you blow under this at the roadside, if officers think your driving is impaired through alcohol you can still be arrested, charged and prosecuted
beer night out

Drivers will be breath tested if police think their driving has been impaired by consuming alcohol or drugs, as well as if they have committed a moving traffic offence, or if they have been involved in a road traffic collision.

Drivers can also be tested at the roadside for the presence of cannabis or cocaine using a simple mouth swab device.

Serious consequences:

A spokesperson for Dorset Police said:

“Being prosecuted for drink or drug driving brings with it all the attendant shame and inconvenience, including putting your job and livelihood in jeopardy. Worse, you could kill or seriously injure yourself or another road user.”

And you could also be disqualified from driving within seven days of being charged with the offence.

Inspector Joe Pardey, Alliance Roads Policing, added: “Drink driving continues to be an issue during the festive season where the temptation to drink and drive is likely to be higher than at other times of the year. We are determined to take dangerous drivers off the road.

“Drink driving is a significant contributory factor in fatal and serious injury collisions and those who kill or seriously injure others whilst drink driving will find themselves sent to prison.”

learner driver

Their message: the only way to keep ourselves and other road users safe is having None for the road.

Martyn Underhill, Police and Crime Commissioner for Dorset, said:

“It is unbelievable that there are still people out there who think it’s OK to get behind the wheel after they’ve had a lot to drink.

“We’re sending out a very clear message – don’t do it. You will be up before the magistrates within a week, lose your licence by Christmas and possibly your job and your home in the New Year.”