Christmas is a time for festivities and with 2020 being quite the year, we’re all looking to kick back, relax and enjoy this festive season to the full. However, even though things are not quite back to normal yet, the rise in drink driving is sadly expected to be very much apparent throughout the Christmas period. Unfortunately, there are still those out there who are willing to risk their own lives and the lives of those in their vehicle or around them. Having said that, it’s important to know the real impact of drink driving at Christmas and what it can mean for those involved.
You’re Not Immune from Drink Driving
There are those that claim that because they’re a certain size or weight, they can drive just fine when over the limit. Although, in reality, perception and reaction times are going to be distorted and so much slower than usual. Being drunk is the same as driving whilst tired, you’re not at your best when it comes to concentration. There are also other factors than just your weight, age, and gender. It could be the level of alcohol you’ve had and your stress levels at the time. Don’t assume you’re immune from the effects of drinking driving just because you might not feel them as much as others.
The Real Impact of Drink Driving at Christmas
As it’s Christmas, there’s likely to be more people out on the roads, both in vehicles and as pedestrians. The real impact that drink driving can have is one that you might not comprehend until it happens to you or your loved ones. In Northern Ireland alone, the amount of drink driving arrests has reached a 12-year high with over 400 drivers being arrested in 2019 during the Christmas period. For what can be a preventable situation, individuals are still taking the risks and their irresponsible actions are impacting those who are unfortunate to be in the right place at the wrong time.
What Happens If You’re Caught Drink Driving?
So, what happens if you’re caught drink driving? Hopefully, you’ll be smart enough to not find yourself in this position but if you do, it’s worth knowing the consequences of your actions. With reference to the most recent data from NI Direct, if you cause death or grievous bodily harm by careless driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, then you could find yourself facing up to 14 years in prison. You could get an unlimited fine issued to you and a ban from driving for at least two years.
Driving or attempting to drive above the legal limit could get you six months’ imprisonment, a fine of up to £5,000, and a ban from driving for at least twelve months. These are consequences that can be damaging to your own life and those around you, not to mention the wider implications that could arise if your employer finds out. They might wish to let you go due to the nature of this incident too, so it could be something that impacts you beyond simply the act itself.
Understand the impact of drink driving and next time you drink, arrange an alternative mode of transport.
To find out more on drink driving penalties visit the NI Direct website.