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Drinking and driving

Drinking alcohol reduces your ability to drive safely. Alcohol affects your judgement, vision, coordination and reflexes—increasing your risk of having a crash.

Alcohol can:

  • make it hard for you to concentrate on driving
  • slow down your reaction time
  • reduce your ability to do more than 1 thing at a time
  • affect your vision and hearing
  • make you feel more confident, which may lead you to take unnecessary risks
  • relax you, increasing your chances of falling asleep while driving
  • make simple tasks more difficult.

If you have consumed alcohol, it is against the law to drive a vehicle if the level of alcohol in your blood or breath is over the alcohol limit for the licence you hold or the vehicle that you want to drive.

Keep in mind that there are a lot of factors that can influence your blood or breath alcohol concentration (BAC) levels and put you over the limit.

Once alcohol is in your system, even at around 0.05% BAC, it affects the brain’s ability to make rational decisions and you are more likely to take risks.

The safest option if you are going to drink is to plan alternative transport or accommodation ahead of time, before the drinking starts. Look for alternatives such as, staying at a friend’s place, using public transport, getting a taxi or choosing a designated driver to ensure you get home safely.

Read about the legal alcohol limits, the penalties for drink driving and how to keep drinking and driving separate.

Last updated
08 March 2017

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