The number of fatal road accidents involving illegal alcohol levels has risen 30%.
Figures released by the Department for Transport today show there were 220 fatal drink drive accidents in 2016 – compared with 170 in 2015.
The number of serious casualties was also up – from 1,170 to 1,250.
The total number of casualties, including slight injuries, increased by 7% to 9,040.
There has, at least, been a dramatic fall since the statistics were first compiled in 1979. In that year, there were 31,430 casualties and 1,640 deaths where excess alcohol was a contributory factor.
Hunter Abbott, Managing Director of breathalyser firm AlcoSense said, “Since 2010 the number of deaths and casualties has been relatively stable.
“But a 30% increase in these latest figures is a worrying symptom of budget cuts to education through Think! as well as to enforcement – with the Police now having to do more with less money.
“Even with just one-eighth of the current English limit, you are 37% more likely to be involved in a fatal road accident than when sober**.
“At 80mg of alcohol per 100mL of blood (0.35mg of alcohol per litre of breath), we have the highest drink drive limit in the developed world. Lowering it could save many lives,” adds Abbott.
Hunter Abbott is also an Advisor to the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS).