How much is too much?

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Dave 'blows in the bag'Three brave 4BC listeners - Sandra, Dave and Izzy - decided to put driving skills to the test with a drink or two under their belt using the Driver driving simulator.

"While there is a useful rule of thumb with regard to alcohol consumption, it can be difficult to know whether or not you're over the limit and how that might affect driving ability," said Russell White, managing director of and 4BC's Drive Talk editor.

Guidelines for drivers to stay under the 0.05 limit are:

    * Men: 2 standard drinks in the first hour and one an hour thereafter.
    * Women: 1 standard drink in the first hour and one an hour thereafter.

DriverSafety's Gary Rigg with the Breathalyser"That guideline is dependent on so many other factors including general fitness and metabolism as well as determining what a standard drink is," said Russell.

"What we wanted to test here was reaction time and co-ordination at various sobriety rates.

"All of our volunteer drivers were surprised to discover that, after a just few drinks, they might have felt fine drive but their reaction times and ability to properly control the vehicle suffered markedly from their first test which they did sober."

Russell said 'feeling fine' wasn't the best measure for determining fitness to drive.

Russell White with 4BC volunteers"If you're planning to have a few drinks, it's best to determine your transport arrangements before hand either with a designated driver or public transport," he said.

"But if you're going to drive, ensure that you alternate with non-alcoholic drinks and make sure you don't have any alcohol in the last hour or two before getting behind the wheel.

"Our 4BC listeners had a great deal of fun and we made sure each of them got home safely."

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