New drink drive limit comes into force today

Taking a breath sample
Taking a breath sample

Today sees the effect of the Scottish Parliament’s decision to unanimously pass into law a measure to reduce the drink drive limit in Scotland to 50mg per 100mls of blood from the current level of 80mg.

And the Scottish justice secretary, Michael Matheson, was in Dumfries and Galloway on Wednesday to highlight the new drink-driving limit north of the border.

The measure brings Scotland into line with much of the rest of Europe, including Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and leaves England, Wales and Malta as the only parts of the EU with a limit over 50mg.

Michael McDonnell, the director of Road Safety Scotland, said: “It’s almost 50 years since the current limit was introduced and that we still lose an average of 20 lives a year in Scotland is a disgrace.

“Evidence from across the world demonstrates that the best results in tackling drink-driving are achieved by lowering the limit, or increasing enforcement, or both.

“We know, too, that a combination of high-profile enforcement, coupled with a heavyweight media campaign is the most efficient use of resources and we are working closely with Police Scotland to ensure that people know about the change to the limit.”