The words send shivers down my spine. If I told you that I’ve heard this several times you’d probably wonder who I hang around with. The truth is that I’ve heard it from several people. People that would be referred to as intelligent. Even with the relentless worldwide media campaigns it seems that the consequences of drink driving have not been realised. The statistics from Alcohol Action Ireland confirm that drink driving in Ireland is a serious problem. 1 in 3 road crash deaths is alcohol-related. Between 2003 and 2005, over half of all drivers that were fatally injured in road traffic accidents(RTA’s) had been drink driving. 7,078 lost their lives on the road between the years 1990 and 2006, alcohol was a contributing factor in 35% of these cases. Drink Driving Penalties There are number of factors taken into account during convictions. Such factors include the amount of alcohol that was found in your blood or urine sample and whether it is your first offence or not. The Road Traffic Act 2006 means that all drink driving penalties must carry a mandatory disqualification period from driving. The penalties are outlined below: The following penalties apply if you are convicted in court. The judge can use their own discretion to increase any of these. For more information on drink driving charges visit: citizensinformation.ie Recent Report A report from the Road Safety Authority (RSA), published in June 2016, revealed that between 2008 and 2012, alcohol was a contributory factor in 38% of all fatal collisions. 983 fatal collisions occurred on Irish roads between 2008 and 2012, claiming the lives of 1,077 people. The forensic details of 867 fatal collisions were analysed by the RSA to identify the cause of the collisions – of these, alcohol was a main contributory factor in 2 in 5 (330) collisions, claiming the lives of 286 people. A further 69 people were seriously injured. The report found that of the 867 collisions analysed: 38% of all fatal collisions involved a driver, motorcyclist, cyclist or pedestrian who had consumed alcohol. 29% of all fatal collisions involved a driver or motorcyclist who had consumed alcohol. 9% of all fatal collisions involved a pedestrian who had consumed alcohol. Of the 947 people killed in the 867 collisions analysed, alcohol was a contributory factor in: 38% of all driver deaths. 30% of all motorcyclist deaths. 47% of all pedestrian deaths. 42% of all passenger deaths. 86% of drivers and 51% of passengers not wearing seatbelt who had consumed alcohol were killed. – See more from Alcoholireland.ie What if… Whether it’s in the hospital or the court room, there’s a good chance that you’ll see the relatives of the victim you injured or worse, killed. That overwhelming feeling of guilt will stay with you for life. The image below is from a media campaign that highlighted the potential dangers of distractions while driving. It has an unsettling message: Think of Both Sides. What if it was your child that got hurt? And how angry would you be at the driver responsible? Distracted Driving Ad holly knight Having lost a 19 year old family member to a drunk driver I have no tolerance of it whatsoever but I’m amazed at the amount of people that do it. I will not touch a drop if I’m driving and I wouldn’t think twice about reporting anyone I see drinking and driving.