Christmas is coming and that means plenty of opportunities to enjoy fun nights out with family and friends. However, with this festive revelry can come a temptation to drink and drive, but doing so should never be an option.

Road safety and breakdown organisation GEM Motoring Assist believes all drivers should be aware of the possible consequences of drink-driving and they should be doing all in their power to rid the roads of this dangerous behaviour.

Dispelling the myths of drink-driving

According to GEM, there are several myths surrounding alcohol and its impact on drivers, so clearing up these misunderstandings could go some way towards making the roads safer this year.

Firstly, it’s important to understand that one drink does not necessarily equate to one unit of alcohol – so motorists who say they’ll only have one and then drive could still be over the legal limit.

Secondly, many people believe that a small amount of alcohol will not impact their ability to drive safely. However, research has shown that even a single alcoholic drink can impair judgement, increase reaction times and generally mean your ability to drive safely is compromised.

Finally, many people believe that eating a large meal will help to ‘soak up the alcohol’, but in reality, all this does is to slow down the absorption of alcohol into your bloodstream, meaning you’ll still be just as drunk by the time you get into your car.

GEM road safety officer Neil Worth commented: “Don’t ever take a risk with drink-driving. If you’re going out for a few drinks, then make arrangements to get home. A £20 taxi fare is definitely worth every penny for your peace of mind. And if you prefer to drive, then stay on soft drinks… or why not organise an alcohol-free night out and avoid any risk altogether?”

What can you do to avoid drink-driving?

There are some simple steps that drivers can take to reduce their temptation to drink and drive this festive season. Indeed, one of the most common methods for groups is to pick a ‘designated driver’.

Meanwhile, simple steps like leaving your keys at home and taking public transport or a taxi to and from your party venue, or arranging to stay over if it’s a house party, will help to cut out any temptation from the outset.

Ultimately, it’s up to all of us to make the roads safer by being more aware of the dangers of alcohol and driving not just at Christmas but throughout the year.

Failure to heed the warnings and to get behind the wheel when under the influence of alcohol is simply a recipe for disaster and we all need to appreciate this fact.

Heather Stark, brand manager at The Fuelcard People, comments: “It’s an easy message that motorists need to remember: drinking and driving simply do not mix. The dangers of drink-driving are well documented, but it’s a sad fact that many motorists need to be reminded of this fact when the festive season approaches.”

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