Cross-border advice issued over drink drive limit

A new awareness campaign aims to ensure that people arriving in Scotland were 'fully aware of the lower limit before considering whether to drive'. Picture: TSPL

A new awareness campaign aims to ensure that people arriving in Scotland were 'fully aware of the lower limit before considering whether to drive'. Picture: TSPL

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A SCOTTISH health board has issued advice to ensure that motorists crossing the border into Scotland understand the new drink-driving limits that are set to be introduced this festive season.

New legislation from the Scottish Parliament has cut the legal level from 80mg to 50mg in every 100ml of blood on the 5th December.

NHS Dumfries and Galloway warned that drivers could leave England under the limit but find they were over the Scottish limit.

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The health body issued advice saying that it is was safer to not to get behind the wheel at all after drinking.

A spokesperson for NHS Dumfries and Galloway said: “It is logically possible that a person could set off on a car journey in England while under the limit in that country and arrive in Scotland and be over the limit in this country.

“Although there are accepted average time frames for how quickly units of alcohol are metabolised there are a number of related factors which can affect blood alcohol levels such as age, weight and metabolism.

“Our best possible advice is that people should not drive after drinking at all as evidence suggests that a person’s driving ability may still be impaired while their blood alcohol levels are below the current legal limit.”

Following pressure from political groups, a major public information campaign is due to get under way next week to highlight all the implications of the new limit, including the cross-border impact.

Kenny MacAskill has said that the adverts will go out on ITV border which broadcasts to southern Scotland and northern England, insisting they would help to “raise the awareness of drivers who live close to the border and who might travel into Scotland each working day”.

The committee called on the Scottish government to ensure that adverts were placed at “strategic locations such as airports, railway stations and ferry terminals, in addition to signposting at the border”.

It said that would ensure that people arriving in Scotland were “fully aware of the lower limit before considering whether to drive”.

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