For most of us, driving is an everyday activity – either as a driver or passenger.

Driving is a very complex activity that requires correct decision-making, total concentration, good co-ordination and rapid reflexes.

There is significant evidence that those who drink and drive have a much greater chance of an accident.

Drinking alcohol can affect your driving

If you drink alcohol and drive, you are likely to find it difficult to:

  • Judge the speed of your vehicle;
  • See and hear normally;
  • Judge the distance between your car and other vehicles;
  • Notice traffic lights, pedestrians and other hazards;
  • Concentrate on the task of driving;
  • Keep your balance, especially if you are riding a motorcycle;
  • Stay awake when you are driving; and
  • React appropriately to things going on around you, particularly if an unexpected hazard should suddenly appear.

Is there such a thing as safe drinking when driving?

There is no absolute safe level of alcohol consumption for competent driving.

Australia has strict laws about drinking alcohol and driving, with the legal limit set at 0.05 blood alcohol concentration (BAC).  Learners or those holding probationary licences must have a 0.00 BAC.

Research shows that any BAC over the legal limit at least doubles your risk of car crash injury and your risk of involvement in a fatal crash rises sharply.

The more you drink, the greater your blood alcohol concentration (BAC). Here are some facts about how your BAC affects your driving ability.

BAC Level Effects from alcohol on driving 
0.02 to 0.05
  • Reduced ability to see or locate moving lights correctly
  • Reduced ability to judge distances
  • Increased tendency to take risks
  • Decreased ability to respond to several stimuli
0.05
  • Twice as likely to have a crash as before they started drinking
0.05 to 0.08
  • Further reduction in your ability to judge distances reduces
  • Impaired sensitivity to red lights
  • Slower reactions
  • Shorter concentration span
0.08
  • Five (5) times more likely to have a crash than before you started drinking
0.08 to 0.12
  • Overestimate abilities
  •  “Euphoria” sets in
  • Recklessly drive
  • Impaired peripheral vision(resulting in accidents due to hitting vehicles while passing)
  • Impaired perception of obstacles
  • 10 times more likely to have a crash

Click here for more information on drink driving

HOW DOES ALCOHOL Affect YOUR BODY?

find out here