Road safety campaigners are warning rugby fans to be mindful of driving while still over the limit the morning after drinking alcohol during the forthcoming Rugby World Cup 2015.
With the World Cup being held at 12 stadiums across England and one in Wales, the event will attract massive media attention and the interest not just of rugby fans, but a majority of sports fans.
As with all major sporting events, the tournament will be enjoyed and celebrated by millions, with alcohol playing a part in those celebrations.
With this in mind, the team behind the Morning After drink drive campaign is urging people to wise up to how long it takes for alcohol to pass through the body.
Earlier this year the Morning After team launched a new app designed to help people calculate when their body is likely to be alcohol-free.
The app, which is available free of charge from Google play and the Apple App Store, has achieved 3,000 downloads since being launched in March 2015.
The app, called the ‘Morning After Calculator’, is not intended to help people work out how much they can drink on a night out before driving home.
The advice on the Morning After website is: “If you are drinking any amount of alcohol on a night out – even one drink – you should leave the car at home and make alternative arrangements.”
The app has been produced to help people calculate roughly when it will be safe to drive the morning after drinking alcohol, and to help calculate when they should stop drinking alcohol in order to be safe to drive the following morning.
The calculator allows one hour for each unit of alcohol, plus an additional hour for the first drink to allow for the alcohol to enter the bloodstream. It then rounds up the calculation to the nearest half hour.
The calculator bases its calculation from the time the user stops drinking. Some people say this is over-cautious, but the Morning After team says it would rather be safe than sorry.
The ‘hours before driving’ calculation is not based on any drink drive limit – it is the length of time when the alcohol in the drinks consumed is likely to have passed through the body. This is when the Morning After team suggests it is ‘safe to drive’.
Chair of the West of England Road Safety Partnership, Matt Peskett of Avon Fire & Rescue Service said: “It takes much longer than most people think for alcohol to pass through the body which means there is often a danger of people unwittingly driving while still over the legal limit the morning after drinking.
“We are urging anyone watching the rugby, and celebrating with a drinking session after the match, to plan ahead and arrange alternative transport the following morning if they have to travel to work, for the school run, or any other engagements.
“The penalties for being caught drink driving the morning after are exactly the same as at any other time – it’s no excuse to say you thought you were fine to drive because of the length of time since your last drink.”