Drink Driving

The table below states the Drink Drive alcohol limits.

Breath Blood Urine
35 80 107

A constable in uniform may require a person to submit to a breath test if the constable reasonably suspects him to have alcohol in his body or to have committed a traffic offence while the vehicle was in motion. The test may also be required in these circumstances after a person has ceased to be a driver. If the test indicates the presence of alcohol the driver need not, but may be, arrested and taken to a police station where he will be required to offer a specimen of blood, urine or breath at the choice of the police. The roadside breath test may be taken by blowing into a bag or into a machine, but these devices are a preliminary test and the sample of breath used in these tests is not the one which is analysed to determine its alcohol content.

Once the driver is taken to the police station they will be then asked to provide a sample of breath by blowing into the lionintoximeter machine. Two samples are taken & the lowest reading is the one which will determine the alcohol level for evidential purposes.

If the reading in breath is above the limit but below 50, then the driver is given the option of providing a further sample, only this time a blood sample. If the driver excersises this option then the police doctor is called in order for a blood sample to be taken. If on the other hand the driver refuses this option then the charge will proceed with the lower of the two breath sample readings.

The offence of Drink Drive is one which is dealt with by the Magistrates Court and if convicted of this offence the maximum penality is a

  • fine of £5000 and/or
  • a 6 month term of imprisonment.

In addition the Court must disqualify the offender from driving for at least one year unless there are special reasons not to.

Note: Where there is a previous conviction during the ten years preceding the current offence, the compulsory disqualification must be for at least three years unless special reasons. A previous conviction for driving (or attempting to drive) a motor vehicle when unfit through drink or a previous conviction for refusing a blood or urine specimen in such circumstances counts as a previous conviction for this offence.

The offender may also be ordered to take a test again.

McKenzies Solicitors, are experts in motoring law. We have a dedicated team who have over 60 years of combined experience in dealing with such matters. To discuss your case in more detail with a specialist soliictor please call or email using the form below.

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