Lowering the Limit

StuartG

slower but further
Location
SE London
Has anybody else read the reports behind these drink limit proposals?

OK I have just skimmed them but it was enough to worry me. My overall impression is this is a politically led proposal. Harmonisation with Europe - it will save lives (yes but how many?). It is not evidence led.

There is evidence but it does look awfully cherry picked and does not include the very heavy provisos of the original research. And then on the radio I actually heard one proponent claim it could save more lives than are currently lost through drink driving.

Do I want to oppose these proposals? Not sure. But what I am sure about is there are other bits of legislation we can be fairly sure will save far more lives - stand up the residential 20mph limit!

The trouble is the 20mph limit effects every driver whereas the drink limit affects only driving drinkers - a much reduced population as the empty and closed pubs of England demonstrate. Politically drink laws are easier than speed laws.

We may be in danger of lowering the wrong limit!
 

mark barker

New Member
Location
Swindon, Wilts
I've always thought it'd be far easier to reduce the limit to zero. It'd clear up the confusion that a lot of drivers seem to have about how much they can drink because of their metabolism etc. I find it hard to accept that pubs would be forced to close if the limits were reduced, unless all drinkers are so lazy that they'd rather stay at home than walk down the road to have a drink.
 

PK99

Legendary Member
Location
SW19
mark barker said:
I've always thought it'd be far easier to reduce the limit to zero. It'd clear up the confusion that a lot of drivers seem to have about how much they can drink because of their metabolism etc. I find it hard to accept that pubs would be forced to close if the limits were reduced, unless all drinkers are so lazy that they'd rather stay at home than walk down the road to have a drink.

Have you thought that through? Do you *really* mean *zero* : granny has a liqueur chocolate? Mouthwash? Minimal but non zero residual alcohol the morning after.....
 
OP
StuartG

StuartG

slower but further
Location
SE London
Well the report is helpful there. Zero is actually interpreted as 20mg so the odd mouthwash or yesterday's pint will not trouble the prosecutors.

But again - which limit, drink or speed, is going to save more lives? Which should we campaign for first?
 

mark barker

New Member
Location
Swindon, Wilts
StuartG said:
But again - which limit, drink or speed, is going to save more lives? Which should we campaign for first?
I'm sure that reducing the speed limit could save more lives, but only if people stuck to the speed limits. How many people on here can honestly say they've never driven over the speed limit? That doesn't make it right, but realistically how are the authorities going to enforce a reduced speed limit given that they can't enforce the current limits?

I guess the same argument could be made about drinking, but I genuinely believe that a lot of drivers don't realise they are over the limit.
 

Dan B

Disengaged member
I like to have a few pints when I go out, and I'm happy to walk back or get public transport or a cab. But the trouble with a zero limit is knowing how long the next day I'll be over the limit for. It's already quite possible to be over the limit the morning after a night out, and there's little way to be sure because usually you don't feel drunk any more

I support the existing drink drive laws, but as for reducing the limit I think there are more important things to worry about. I'd like to see many more people done for actual crap driving, instead of just for having things in their system or environment that could potentially lead to crap driving. Are you going to legislate against driving while tired or driving with arguing kids in the back or driving while the satnav is going mental? It could end up being a very long list of specifics that really should be covered by a general "driving badly" rule
 
StuartG said:
Well the report is helpful there. Zero is actually interpreted as 20mg so the odd mouthwash or yesterday's pint will not trouble the prosecutors.
I hope so. I use an asthma inhaler, which contains a trace amount of alcohol. I understand that the Police have a set procedure when breathalyzing someone, they are supposed to ask them if they have used an inhaler within the past few minutes. I have never had this put to the test!

As to the set limits: well I am positive that they are needlessly high, for me. I honestly do not know what the relationship is, between my intake of alcohol and my blood-alcohol level. Is there a quick and ready way to determine this, short of buying a breath-testing kit myself?! :ohmy:

What I do know, is how much I would allow myself to drink (which is seldom). One glass of 1% beer (about 0.25 units) would be safe for driving, for me. One 250 ml glass of normal-strength beer (about 1 unit), I would not drive but would feel able to cycle. One pint of normal-strength beer (about 2.5 units) I would feel unsafe to either drive or cycle. But all these intakes would probably leave me below the legal limit (0.08%). And these limits are what I set myself: they may not suit others.
 

Ravenbait

Someone's imaginary friend
Oh, about a couple of years, maybe more. I missed Patrick and wondered if Macleach was hanging around here.

Sam
 

Dave Davenport

Legendary Member
Location
Hampshire
coruskate said:
I like to have a few pints when I go out, and I'm happy to walk back or get public transport or a cab. But the trouble with a zero limit is knowing how long the next day I'll be over the limit for. It's already quite possible to be over the limit the morning after a night out, and there's little way to be sure because usually you don't feel drunk any more

I support the existing drink drive laws, but as for reducing the limit I think there are more important things to worry about. I'd like to see many more people done for actual crap driving, instead of just for having things in their system or environment that could potentially lead to crap driving. Are you going to legislate against driving while tired or driving with arguing kids in the back or driving while the satnav is going mental? It could end up being a very long list of specifics that really should be covered by a general "driving badly" rule
What he said.
 

marinyork

Resting in suspended Animation
Location
Logopolis
What stuartg and coruskate said plus I think there's much more scope for getting far more breath tests than currently happen. I regard this as much more important than lowering the limit but of course it's not any glamorous new law but plod on the ground that will have to do this time consuming and boring work.
 
OP
StuartG

StuartG

slower but further
Location
SE London
Just to say again zero is interpreted as 20mg - the level applied to commercial airline pilots. So that has worked fine all over europe and america.

We could do that if we wished. But how many lives would be saved? Not many I think - the claims and evidence in the report look very unconvincing to me whether it be 20 or 50mg. The big drops are more to do with enforcement than levels. Jut check back to the research papers selectively cited ...

The residential 20mph limit give a better and surer return. Sorry to be repetitious.
 
OP
StuartG

StuartG

slower but further
Location
SE London
User said:
The 20mg limit for commercial pilots is just that - the limit for pilots. It's not a zero limit..
Do please read the thread before commenting. Zero is used IN THE REPORT ON LIMITS IN THE UK to be 20mg. It happens to be the same as commercial airline pilots.

You also implicitly connect the 25/30% drink related deaths with the lower limits. Does that also include those over 80mg and what percentage is this? The question of whether limits or enforcement is the main issue here.
 
Top Bottom