Drivers warned they face unlimited fines for one Christmas naughty habit

A former police officer and TV personality has urged motorists to avoid driving the morning after a Christmas party or risk safety issues and fines.

According to the UK dashcam manufacturer Nextbase, between 2012 and 2022, 8,900 drink drivers crashed between 5am to noon.

Ben Pearson, former West Yorkshire Police road traffic officer, seen on the TV programme Police Interceptors, advised drivers that alcohol remains in the bloodstream long after their night out.

He explained: “There’s a reason we still do regular breath testing in the morning – a lot of people end up on the roads convinced the sleep they’ve had has taken all of the alcohol out of their system, when it hasn’t.

“I’ve seen people engaging in very dangerous driving under the impression that the six hours or so since their last drink has cured them, especially around the festive season when there is a bit more drinking than usual. Better to be safe than sorry.”

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According to the charity Drinkaware, the drink driving limit in England, Wales and Northern Ireland is 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood.

However, Scottish drivers are not able to get behind the wheel with more than 50 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood.

Motorists who exceed these limits could face an unlimited, fine, a driving ban of at least a year and six months imprisonment, which could be expanded to life if it causes the death of another road user.

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Bryn Brooker, head of road safety at Nextbase, highlighted that there it is impossible to speed up the effects of alcohol to keep drivers safe on the roads.

He said: “It might feel like you’re being responsible by sleeping it off after your Christmas do then driving the next morning – but unless the alcohol is out of your system you’re not.

“Even small amounts in your bloodstream impact your ability to drive, and because we all process alcohol differently there’s no hard and fast rule about when it will have left your system. There is no way to speed up this process – a coffee might make you feel better, but it won’t remove the alcohol.”

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In addition, Bryn recommended that motorists who are fearful that drink drivers could have an impact on their safety should invest in a dashcam, with many being successfully used to catch dangerous drivers.

He advised: “Drivers concerned about other drivers in their area driving erratically should consider a dashcam.

“Footage from dashcams can now easily be sent to every police force in England and Wales through the Nextbase dashcam safety portal – and has taken thousands of dangerous drivers off the road.”

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