Car insurance premiums skyrocket for convicted drivers

Visit the DrinkAware website for help and guidance

Convicted drink drivers could see their car insurance premiums soar by up to an average of 75 per cent, research shows.

A motorist with a drink driving conviction (DR10 penalty) could find their car insurance premium rise 75 per cent from an average of £439 per year. Other convicted drivers may find it difficult to get insured at all.

Despite a decline in the number of drink driving accidents (data from the DfT) shows that the number of fatalities in 2012 decreased by 8% compared to the previous year), thousands of people are still failing the breath test and thousands further are injured on the roads by drivers who are over the limit.

UK law states that the alcohol limit for drivers is 80 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood, 35 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath or 107 milligrammes per 100 millilitres of urine.

Visit the DrinkAware website for help and guidance

Despite these figures, DfT statistics show that 75% of people agree that “most people don’t know how much alcohol they can drink before being over the legal drink drive limit”.

Advice from Drink Aware states that the amount a person could drink before being considered over the driving limit varies from one person to another and depends on weight, gender, age, metabolism, current stress levels and whether you’ve eaten recently.

An article from insurance comparison engine Compare The Market (owned by the BGL Group) advises “Even if you’re under the limit, any alcohol can affect your coordination, judgment and reaction times so the safest strategy when it comes to driving is really to abstain completely.”

The article goes on to say: “Anyone caught over the legal limit will be banned from driving for at least 12 months, and fined up to £5,000. You can also be sent to prison for up to six months.”

Across the pond, a smartphone breathalyser called Alcohoot has been created which allows you to measure your blood alcohol concentration level using your phone. Developments like this are a positive step towards eliminating drink driving.