Drivers reminded of new drink drive limit

Councillor Donald Moffat is encouraging drivers to take note of new regulations as part of an awareness campaign.
Councillor Donald Moffat is encouraging drivers to take note of new regulations as part of an awareness campaign.

As part of a festive safety campaign, drivers are being reminded that the new lower drink drive limit comes into force on Friday.

From Friday December 5, Scotland’s limit goes from 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood to 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood.

The aim of lowering the limit is to help reduce the numbers of deaths on Scotland’s roads, with an average of 20 people dying each year as a result of incidents involving drink drivers.

The new limit in Scotland in practice could mean one alcoholic drink such as a glass of wine or a pint of beer would put a driver over the legal limit.

Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for community safety, Councillor Donald Moffat, said: “The new legislation means the legal limit in Scotland is lower than it is in England, and a driver travelling from Cumbria or Northumberland into the Borders could find themselves over the limit.

“As a result, the national campaign has targeted the likes of Jedburgh and Berwick-Upon-Tweed to ensure that drivers on both sides of the border are aware of the new limit in Scotland.

“It is important that all motorists in the Borders and beyond know about the new lower drink drive limit, particularly during the festive period. We want to make sure people in the region are safe and the way to ensure that while driving is to take no risks and have no alcohol at all.”

One in three motorists have admitted driving ‘the morning after’ while over the limit and drivers are again advised not to take a risk in such a scenario.

Former Cabinet Secretary for Justice, Kenny MacAskill, who introduced the bill, added: “With the approval of Parliament, the new drink drive limit will come into force on 5 December, making our roads safer and saving lives.

“We are doing everything we can to make sure everyone is informed about the new lower level.

“A persistent minority of people are still getting behind the wheel after drinking - the best approach is to have nothing at all, alcohol at any level impairs driving.

“This new law will bring Scotland into line with most of Europe and hopefully reduce drink drive arrests and prosecutions, as we have already seen in the Republic of Ireland, where drivers adjusted their behaviour to take account of the lower limit.”