An influential coalition of doctors and health experts has urged the House of Lords to support legislation to reduce the drink-drive limit across the entire UK.
The group believe that there are compelling arguments to bring the laws of England, Wales and Northern Ireland in line with the lower limit which is already in place in Scotland.
The issue was once again set to be debated in the Upper Chamber today.
If the proposals went ahead, motorists would not be able to drive if they had more than 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood (the current limit is 80mg).
The Alcohol Health Alliance wrote to The Times, arguing that a change in legislation would save lives and significantly improve road safety.
Prof Sir Ian Gilmore, who chairs the group, said: “There is a wealth of published, peer-reviewed, high quality research on the impact of alcohol on psychomotor skills and judgement.
“While even low levels have an effect on these critical functions, the deterioration in performance moving from a blood level of 50 to 80mg per 100ml are striking.”
Despite the group’s intervention, Westminster remains reluctant to follow the example of politicians north of the border.
A spokesman for the Department for Transport said: “The drink-driving limit for England and Wales strikes an important balance between safety and personal freedom.
“By having our limit, we are not criminalising those who drink a small amount a long time before driving, but our advice remains unchanged: don’t take the risk by driving after you have had a drink.”
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