Caught drink driving? What to do & what to expect?

Insurance Revolution Blog

Around 8,000 casualties & 240 deaths are witnessed from drink driving every year. However, we understand that good people can make mistakes. There are of course no good excuses for drink driving, but we are all humans and can make errors in judgement. 

The post below explains what to do and what to expect when you are caught drink driving. but before that let’s have a look at the drink driving limits followed in the UK & USA-

Limit followed in the UK:

For Northern Ireland, Wales and England-

The drink driving limit is 80 mg alcohol/100 ml blood

35 microgrammes/100ml breath

107 mg/100ml urine

For Scotland-

The drink driving limit is 50 mg alcohol/100 ml blood

22 microgrammes/100ml breath

67 mg/100ml urine

For the United States of America-

The drink driving limit is 80 mg alcohol/100 ml blood.

However, these levels would depend on certain factors:

  • Your sex, age, weight & metabolism
  • Amount and type of alcohol you had
  • The food that you ate recently
  • Stress levels

Now, let’s see what to do when you are caught by the police for drink driving-

If you are caught drink driving

You may not be aware if you are over the limit, maybe you are not, but if you are stopped by the police it is best to follow their instructions and answer their questions honestly, you do not need to make the situation worse than it already is. 


What if you refuse Breathalyzer test?

When the person suspected of drink driving refuses a Breathalyser test, the police would take them to the police station. At the station, a doctor would collect your urine or blood sample for testing. Always remember, nobody else but a physician can take the sample & that too with your permission.

The doctor will take your sample and extend the result immediately. You would be given the printout of alcohol level for your records. The lowest sample reading would be taken as the evidence for your case. Remember, if you are under the influence of drugs and it’s not just drink driving, the doctor will get to know from your test. So, be careful and the safest way here to avoid any kinds of drugs while driving.


You should also be aware of the penalties you might face while caught driving under the influence of alcohol-

If you are driving while above legal limit/unfit to drive under influence-

  • 3 months of imprisonment
  • Driving ban  (possibly)
  • Fine up till £25,00

If you are attempting to drive:

  • 6 months of imprisonment
  • Driving ban for 1 year
  • Unlimited fine

Refusal of breath, urine or blood specimen for analysis:

  • 6 months of imprisonment
  • Driving ban  for 1 year
  • Unlimited fine

Causing death through careless driving while drunk

  • 14 years of imprisonment
  • Driving ban for 2 years
  • Unlimited fine
  • Extended driving test before getting your licence back.

If you have been caught drink driving and are now ready to get back on the road then check out our drink drivers insurance page.

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