Drink Driving is extremely dangerous and a serious issue that should not be ignored. In the UK alone, it is estimated that nearly 1 in 6 road deaths are caused by drink drivers and traffic accidents are still a leading cause of alcohol related deaths among young men aged 16-24 
Even though you may feel confident after drinking, alcohol is a depressant and will make you more prone to accidents; it slows down the brain and affects the body’s responses.
- affects our judgement and reasoning
- slows down our reactions
- upsets our sense of balance and coordination
- impairs our vision and hearing
- makes us lose concentration
- makes us drowsy 
People who have been drinking are more likely to take risks, further increasing the likelihood of accidents . The current drink-drive limit in the UK is a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 80mg%:
With a BAC of 80mg%, you are five times more likely to have a driving accident than before drinking.
With a BAC of 120mg%, you are ten times more likely to have a driving accident 
If for any reason you have drunk any alcohol or may have done so the night before, be extremely cautious that you may well be over the drink-drive limit when stepping back into a car. Yes the BAC levels are affected by how much alcohol has been drunk, the speed of drinking and over what period of time but an individual’s weight, gender, health, and food intake also affect the absorption and metabolism of alcohol, making an estimation of how much it is safe to drink before driving very dangerous. 
If you’re charged with a drink driving offence, you’ll be taken to court. If you’re found guilty, you could receive a maximum penalty of six months in prison, a £5000 fine and you will get banned from driving for a year. If you kill someone while under the influence of alcohol, you could be facing a fourteen year prison sentence, an unlimited fine and a minimum of two years off the road. 
- Road Casualties: Great Britain 2009: Annual Report (Department for Transport, 2010).
- Drinkaware.com: http://www.drinkaware.co.uk/facts/factsheets/alcohol-and-accidents]
- Cherpitel, C. 1993: ‘Alcohol, Injury, and Risk-Taking Behaviour: Data from a National Sample’ Alcoholism: Clinical and Experimental Research, vol. 17, no. 4, pp. 762-766.
- Denney, RC. 1986: ‘Alcohol and accidents’.
- Drinkdrving.org: http://www.drinkdriving.org/worldwide_drink_driving_limits.php
- DirectGov: http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAndTransport/Roadsafetyadvice/DG_195019
It is not clever to take drugs and get behind the wheel. It is extremely dangerous and dependant on the drugs you have taken can affect your ability to driver in a number of different ways.
Drug drivers can suffer from:
- slower reaction times
- erratic and aggressive behaviour
- an inability to concentrate properly
- panic attacks
- tremors (or ‘the shakes’)
- fatigue 
The extent of the risk of drug driving is clear. In the UK alone, around 18% of people killed in road crashes have traces of illegal drugs in their blood, with cannabis being the most common .
All drugs impair the ability to drive safely however drugs differ in their effects. You can see the variety of effects in the most common drugs used below.
- Slow driving
- Avoiding driving tasks that require effort
- Affects ability to control the car safely
- Increased reaction and decision times
- Inaccurate judgement of time and distance
- Inability to maintain headway
- Poor control of lateral position
- Impaired sustained vigilance
- Aggressive manoeuvres
- Poor control of the vehicle
- Erratic driving
- Over-confident, high risk behaviour
- Distorted vision
- Heightened sounds
- Increased fatigue and tiredness
- Affected perception and judgement of risks
- A more aggressive attitude 
- THINK!: http://drugdrive.direct.gov.uk/impairdriving.shtml
- RoSPA: Driving for Work: Drink & Drugs
Leave driving at speed to the controlled environment of the circuit, taking it out onto the roads will only put your own life and the life of others at risk.
There is no denying that driving too fast will give you less time to react to hazards, make it take longer to bring your car to a standstill and if you are involved in an accident, will only increase the chances of severe injury.
At least one party exceeding the speed limit and travelling too fast for the conditions is reported in 13 per cent of all accidents and these accidents account for an astonishing 27 per cent of all fatalities .
The dangers of speed are clear and speed limits are there for a reason. Approximately two-thirds of all crashes in which people are killed or injured happen on roads with a speed limit of 30 mph or less. The risk of a pedestrian who is hit by a car being killed increases slowly until impact speeds of around 30 mph. Above this speed, the risk increases rapidly, so that a pedestrian who is hit by a car travelling at between 30 mph and 40 mph is between 3.5 and 5.5 times more likely to be killed than if hit by a car travelling at below 30 mph .
The minimum penalty for speeding is a £60 fine and three penalty points added to your licence and if you already have a certain number of points on your licence, you won’t be offered a fine and you’ll have to go to court.
Also remember to use your judgement and know when to slow down. Many accidents happen when drivers are within the speed limit but driving too fast for the road conditions on the road.
Think carefully about the speed at which you:
- approach a bend in the road
- cross a roundabout
- approach a junction
- can safely overtake
- drive past or through roadworks
- drive in bad weather
- drive on unlit roads 
- Road Casualties Great Britain 2009: Annual Report (Department for Transport, 2010).
- Stoppingdistances.org: http://www.stoppingdistances.org.uk/facts/speed.htm
- THINK!: http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAndTransport/Roadsafetyadvice/DG_178867
Driving whilst tired is a dangerous scenario that can easily be avoided. Driver fatigue is shown to be responsible for almost 20% of traffic accidents in UK and approximately 300 people are killed every year because of drivers' falling asleep at the wheel. 
Unlike offences like drink driving and speeding, there is no actual law that says it is an offence to drive when tired. However, if you cause an accident and it is found that you were falling asleep at the wheel you could be charged with dangerous driving and if you cause death you can be charged with death by dangerous driving which holds a maximum 14 year prison sentence. 
Sleep-related accidents are more likely than others to result in a fatality or serious injury
Peak times for accidents are in the early hours and after lunch
About 40% of sleep-related accidents involve commercial vehicles
Men under 30 have the highest risk of falling asleep at the wheel
There are a number of precautions you can take to avoid falling asleep at the wheel. Firstly, don’t drive if you’re already tried and it is advised to plan regular breaks within long journeys. Try to avoid driving during the hours you usually sleep and if you do feel tired at any point during a journey, stop to take a break, drink a high-caffeine energy drink and wait 15 minutes also in order to allow it to take effect. However please note that the only real cure for tiredness is to sleep, caffeine is only a short term solution. 
- THINK! http://think.direct.gov.uk/fatigue.html
- Brake.org: http://www.brake.org.uk/facts/driver-tiredness.htm
Using your mobile phone whilst driving is dangerous! You’re four times more likely to crash if you use a mobile phone while you drive as your attention is distracted from the road having an adverse affect on driver performance in a variety of ways .
- Maintenance of lane position
- Maintenance of appropriate and predictable speed
- Maintenance of appropriate following distances from vehicles in front
- Reaction times
- Judgement and acceptance of safe gaps in traffic
- General awareness of other traffic 
If you’re caught using a hand-held phone while driving, you could be prosecuted. You can expect to get an automatic fixed penalty notice. This means you'll get three penalty points on your driving licence and have to pay a fine of £60. However, your case may go to court. If it does, you may also face disqualification from driving or riding on top of a maximum fine of £1,000. If you're a driver of a bus or goods vehicle, you could face a maximum fine of £2,500 .
If you do need to make a call, park safely before doing so and do not park on the hard shoulder of the motorway. We also suggest you try to avoid calling other people when they’re driving, if you do call someone and they tell you they are driving, ask them to call you back when they have parked up safely .
- THINK!: http://think.direct.gov.uk/mobile-phones.html
- RoSPA: http://www.rospa.com/roadsafety/info/mobile_phone_report.pdf
- Directgov: http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAndTransport/roadsafetyadvice/DG_188761
It is important to be careful, considerate and aware of motorbikes on the road because injuries to motorcyclists are out of proportion to their presence on our roads – they account for just 1% of total road traffic, but account for 21% of all road user deaths.
With less protection for motorbike users they are 50 times more likely to be killed or seriously injured in serious accidents than those that use a car. It is therefore important to be vigilant and careful to avoid having an accident with motorbike users. Motorbikes are far smaller than cars and may pass you on either side so it is important to be vigilant and carefully check for motorbikes when:
- changing lanes
- at junctions
- opening doors
- pulling away
At times it may be frustrating at times to see motorbikes driving dangerously and weaving through traffic, but it is best to stay calm and keep your distance, using this advice will help avoid accidents and potentially a fatality. 
- THINK!: http://think.direct.gov.uk/motorcycles.html
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