Uncategorized Drink-drive limit should be lowered in England and Wales, say police

Drink-drive limit should be lowered in England and Wales, say police

 A police breathalyser test. The Police Federation conference will address figures that showed nearly one in six women admitted last year to driving over the limit.
A police breathalyser test. The Police Federation conference will address figures that showed nearly one in six women admitted last year to driving over the limit.

The drink-driving limit should be lowered in England and Wales to match the threshold in Scotland, the Police Federation has suggested.

The federation, which represents police officers, said the limit should drop from 80mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood to 50mg. It also warned about a need to address drink-driving by women.

The issue is scheduled to be discussed at the annual conference of the Police Federation of England and Wales this week.

Victoria Martin, a chief inspector working at the federation, told the Daily Telegraph: “We would like to see a lower drink-drive limit, as most other European countries have, as well as Scotland, which saw a marked reduction in failed breathalyser tests as soon as the law was changed last year.

“We would like to see road safety back on the national and local agenda.”

Martin will address figures from Social Research Associates that showed that nearly one in six women who responded to a survey last year admitted to driving when they thought they were over the limit, while many were unaware how much alcohol would put them over the threshold.

The research group said anti-drink-driving messages were “not getting across adequately”, including how drinking impairs driving ability, and the risks of getting caught.

Martin told the newspaper: “We’ve seen a steep decline in men drink-driving over the years, with targeted advertising campaigns, which is great, but women don’t seem to be getting the same message.

It seems we have a worrying trend, with females still flouting the drink-drive limit, sometimes scarily unaware, putting themselves and others in danger as well as adding to the drain on police resources.”

The three-day Police Federation conference in Bournemouth begins amid warnings about the impact of further cuts to services. The most significant item on the agenda is likely to be an address on Wednesday by theTheresa May – her first major public speech since being reinstalled as home secretary following the Conservatives’ election victory.

Warnings about the effects of austerity have been issued ahead of the conference, which has been given the subtitle Cuts Have Consequences. Steve White, the chairman of the federation, has claimed that policing is “on its knees” and could not sustain any further cuts.

However, Sara Thornton, chairwoman of the National Police Chiefs’ Council, rejected the assessment. She said: “Despite the challenges, we are by no means a service on our knees.”

About 17,000 officers have been lost from the police services since 2010.

Last year, May stunned delegates with an uncompromising speech in which she announced a number of major changes to the service and reeled off a list of scandals that have blighted the reputation of the police in recent years.

Counter-terrorism, cybercrime, child protection and drink-driving are among issues that will be discussed at the conference.

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