We always need to be careful with how much we drink if we are going to drive after. However, there are changes to the drink driving limits coming into effect on 1 December 2014 which mean people will need to be particularly mindful of how much they are drinking especially with all the social functions leading up to Christmas!
The Land Transport Amendment Act (no 2) 2014 lowers the alcohol limit for drivers aged 20 years and over. Driver’s under 20 years of age continue to not be allowed any alcohol in their system when they drive.
From 1 December 2014 the alcohol limit for drivers aged 20 years and over lowers from 400mcg of alcohol per litre of breath to 250mcg. The blood alcohol limit lowers from 80mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood to 50mg. Drivers who fail an evidential breath test between 251 and 400mcg of alcohol per litre of breath will receive an infringement notice with a $200 infringement fee and 50 demerit points.
Drivers who accumulate 100 or more demerit points from driving offences within two years will receive a three month driver licence suspension.
Drivers who are over 400mcg of alcohol per litre of breath, or 80mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood, will continue to face criminal sanctions as they do now.
Although there is information available that suggests that most people would be able to drink two standard drinks over two hours and remain under the new drink-driving limits for adults, the fact remains that even small amounts of alcohol affect your judgment.
The best advice is that if you plan to drive, then do not drink. Arrange a sober driver, call a taxi or take the bus to avoid any risks.
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