Why Are Older Drivers Taking The Risk Of Drink Driving?

Tue 16th Apr 2019

A new study of research has found starting evidence that older drivers are blatantly ignoring the drink drive laws by driving whilst over the limit.

The research, which has been conducted by Direct Line found that that more than 1.6m drivers over the age of 55 had driven while over the limit and a further 3.6m had admitted that they could have been over the limit while behind the wheel.

Speaking about the worrying trend, Steve Barrett, head of motor insurance at Direct Line, said: “It is clear that younger drivers are not the only offenders when it comes to drink driving.

“Motorists may become complacent as they get older because they feel they are so experienced behind the wheel, but tolerance levels differ hugely depending on body type.

“Just because someone doesn’t feel drunk or is only driving a short distance does not mean they are safe to drive.”

Whilst more experienced drivers may feel that they know their body’s limits the best, there is still no law which suggests that being able to handle alcohol in your system can make you a safer driver on the roads. One of the biggest excuses for drink driving was that the trip made was only a short distance, with 1.2m aged over 55 using that excuse. A further 750,000 in the same age bracket said that they may have been over the limit after being drunk from the night before.

While more than half a million of those surveyed believe that older drivers are safer, and therefore less dangerous if they have had a drink, the Department for Transport figures suggest otherwise, with 26 per cent of all road accidents in 2017 caused by older drivers.