Police Scotland's Festive Crackdown on Driving under the Influence: All You Need to Know

Police Scotland’s Festive Crackdown on Driving under the Influence: All You Need to Know

The Minister for Transport and Police Scotland have launched this year’s festive enforcement campaign to tackle drink and drug-driving across Scotland, highlighting the personal and criminal consequences of being found guilty of driving under the influence.

More than 20,000 drivers are stopped by the police in Scotland every month and Police Scotland’s enforcement campaign will see an even stronger focus on drink driving on Scotland’s roads, so the chances of being caught are higher than ever.

The consequences of drink and drug-driving can be devastating and put not only the driver but any other passengers, and road users at risk of serious injury or worse. With more people out and about and enjoying Christmas parties this year, in comparison to the Covid-19 restrictions that consumed the festive season in 2020, Police Scotland’s message is clear: if you’re planning to have a drink, even just the one, leave the car at home.

Police Scotland confirmed that 395 motorists having tested positive for drug-driving, and 600 arrested for drink-driving and related offences throughout Scotland in the last two months alone. Unfortunately, it is the reality that some people do still take the risk.

Here at Bonnar Accident Law, we understand that behind each statistic, there is potentially a family dealing with a devastating aftermath. We have significant experience handling road traffic accidents, and we are here to help every step of the way. If you’d like more information get in touch today, or keep reading to find out all you need to know on drink and drug-driving.

What are the current drink and drug-driving limits in Scotland?

The current drink drive limit is:

  • 22 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath
  • 50 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood
  • 67 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of urine

The drink and drug-drive limit in Scotland is stricter than in England, so just one small drink could put you over. The reason it’s measured as a percentage of alcohol in your breath, blood or urine rather than per units of alcohol, is because everybody processes alcohol in different ways, and the same drink can create different levels of alcohol for different people. This can be influenced by factors such as your weight, age, metabolism, medication or your stress levels.

Although it’s clear that you cannot safely drink any alcohol when driving, the reason the limit isn’t zero is because there’s more than one reason why drivers could have alcohol in their body other than from drinking. For example, certain foods, mouthwash and medications can contain alcohol.

Regarding the drug-driving limit, Scotland has a zero-tolerance approach to tackling illegal drugs and driving. No matter what kind of drugs someone may have taken, or how much, it is a crime to take illegal drugs and drive.

The police can stop you if they suspect you of drink or drug-driving, and if you are found to be over the drink drive limit or to have used illegal drugs, this is treated very seriously. The consequences are severe, ranging from receiving a criminal record, a minimum 12 month driving ban, the possibility of losing your job and receiving a substantial fine. Repeat offenders, or those that cause death due to careless driving, may even face the prospect of a prison sentence and a much longer driving ban.

Can an injured passenger claim against a drunk driver?

As always, the most important element of any claim for compensation is proving that someone else’s negligence caused you to be injured, through no fault of your own. In terms of typical passenger compensation claims, if you can prove that the driver caused the accident, the grounds for your claim would rest on the fact that you were owed a duty of care that you did not receive.

If a driver fails to show due care for their passengers’ safety, and their reckless or negligent driving results in serious injury, the passenger then has the right to claim for any damages which were a direct result of their injuries or loss.

For drink and drug-driving cases, this can be a little more complicated. You could still claim against a drunk driver if you were injured as a passenger in their vehicle that was involved in a car accident. Even if you yourself were drunk. Regardless of whether a passenger is drunk or not, a driver who causes an accident will invariably carry the lion’s share of responsibility for the accident.

However, when a passenger decides to be driven by a driver they knew, or ought to have known was drunk, that passenger may be liable for contributory negligence. Contributory negligence means that any compensation you are awarded would be reduced, owing to the fact that your choice to enter a vehicle with a drunk driver contributed to the injuries you sustained.

What do I do if I’m involved in a road traffic accident caused by drink or drug-driving?

We completely understand how distressing it is to be involved in a road traffic accident, especially if you are injured by someone drink or drug-driving. Just try your best to stay calm and remember as many details as you can, as these can help to support your claim if you weren’t at fault. Try to record the following:

  • Names, addresses and contact details of all drivers involved
  • Vehicle registration details for all vehicles involved
  • Accident date and time
  • Accident location
  • Full contact details of any witnesses

Most importantly of course, if necessary, seek medical attention as soon as possible and report to your GP following any hospital admissions. And remember to always report the accident to the police.

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors today.

Our Guide to Making a Claim if You’ve Been Injured During Your Scottish Staycation

As we are slowly making our way out of lockdown in Scotland and with the vaccines providing us with the hope that we’re on our path back to some semblance of normality, the tourism industry has been reopening its doors for the first time this year.

However, with the continued uncertainty of the traffic light system and the various rules when it comes to travelling abroad, it’s understandable that many people in Scotland will be choosing to enjoy a holiday closer to home in the form of a ‘staycation’. This was echoed in a recent study by Travelodge, which suggested that 4 in 5 people across the UK are planning a ‘staycation’ holiday this summer rather than leaving the country in search of warmer climates.

With the beauty of the Scottish Highlands, the white beaches of the Outer Hebrides, and the rich history of the Capital city, travelling around Scotland is the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and take a break from the stresses of daily life. Unfortunately, no matter what safety precautions you may take, accidents, injuries and illnesses can and do happen while you are on holiday.

Unfortunately getting injured or falling ill may mean you have to cut your holiday short and return home. However, if this wasn’t your fault you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim for compensation. In this blog we’ll explore the circumstances under which you could make a claim, and the steps you can take to support your case.


What Can I Claim For?

There are many different accidents and injuries you may be able to claim compensation for, if you were to fall ill or be injured whilst on your staycation. Here’s just a few examples:

  • An injury sustained in the hotel premises such as a slip, trip or fall caused by defective flooring or poorly maintained grounds
  • You slip and injure yourself on any type of spillage or leak within the hotel grounds
  • You contract food poisoning after eating or drinking in the hotel restaurant, particularly if other guests also suffer from the same food poisoning
  • You injure yourself during any recreational or sports activities, organised by the hotel or tour operator
  • You sustain an injury in a road traffic accident, whilst on a day trip organised by the hotel or tour operator

What Can I Do To Support My Claim?

In order to support any claim, the most important factor is to be able to prove the illness or injury was in no way your own fault and was caused by the negligence of a third party (such as your accommodation provider, tour operator or the hotel staff). There are some other steps we’d highly recommend you take, to ensure your claim for compensation has the best chance of success:

  • Report the illness or injury to the hotel staff, tour operator or your travel company straight away at the time of the incident itself.
  • Make sure this is noted within the hotel’s accident book, this will ensure there is a date/time record of the incident occurring. It should also detail whom you reported the incident to, the circumstances surrounding it and the deals of any witnesses. Make sure you check this has been accurately recorded.
  • Keep receipts of any and all expenses you may have an incurred, as a direct result of your accident or illness.
  • If you’ve had to seek medical advice or visit the hospital, be sure to maintain all medical records. Once you’ve returned from your staycation, report to your GP as soon as possible.

All of these points will go a long way to strengthen your claim, to make sure you’re awarded a fair compensation sum to cover all of your medical and travel expenses that may have left you out of pocket, as well as for the hardship caused.


How Can We Help?

We understand how distressing it can be when you’ve had an accident or sustained an injury of any type whilst on holiday. It can be difficult to know where to turn to next, as even if you’re holidaying at home in Scotland, you are still likely to be far from your own home and removed from your familiar surroundings.

Here at Bonnar Accident Law, we have significant experience handling these types of claims, so if you feel your hotel or holiday company compromised yours and your family’s safety and caused an injury or illness, then don’t hesitate to contact us today. We’ll take your case on a No Win No Fee basis, covering all the upfront costs to ensure that your claim the best chance of success.

If you have been injured in an accident that wasn’t your fault and you would like more information, please get in touch with one of our No Win No Fee solicitors today.