Why zero tolerance on drink driving will never happen
It has been announced there will be an amendment to the amount of alcohol you can consume and legally drive.
Every time something like this comes up, there are calls for scrapping a legal limit and having zero tolerance. Zero tolerance meaning no alcohol in your bloodstream at all.
If you are a self employed courier or you drive for a living in a self employed capacity, every day you are on the road is a day you are earning money.
So what happens if the law is passed that if you have any alcohol in your bloodstream, you automatically get a years ban?
If you are ill and you take cough medicine, one of the ingredients is alcohol along with mouthwash, toothpaste and other everyday products such as Krispy Kreme Donuts, Dunkin Donuts, Red Bull, Ritz Crackers, Butterfingers, 7up, Dr. Pepper, Lucozade and Ribena soft drink, Rubicon Fruit Drink, Ice Cream products and some Vanilla essences.
It’s pretty hard to avoid and you could be driving under the influence without even realising it. Some products are by products of alcohol or it’s used in the process of making the product, not enough to be listed as an ingredient but if you add in the mouth wash and cough medicine you are over the limit and without your livelihood without knowing.
How long before it becomes a legal defense for someone speeding and over the limit -”no I haven’t been drinking officer but I have just had a Red Bull and Krispy Kreme…”
It’s not just food and drink products, or oral products. If you look in your kitchen or bathroom you will see you are surrounded by alcohol based products – facial toners, cleaning products, shower gels, shampoo, bubble baths. Can it be proved you don’t absorb even trace amounts?
Of course the cost of breathalysing will go up, and so will the amount of false positives. The amount of alcohol on your breath being enough to trigger a breathalyser to say you are over the limit, when followed by blood tests that show negative. Increased costs involved here will increase costs elsewhere as usual.
Ask any practicing Muslim or recovering alcoholic what lengths they have to go to to find products without alcohol in them and you see it’s like trying to find a needle in a haystack.
Reduce the limit by all means, driving under the influence of alcohol isn’t something to be proud of, and we do not condone drinking and driving but to reduce the limit to zero? That’s foolhardy and there will be no one left on the roads to deliver your goods, especially in cold and flu season.