No drink for drivers under new plan

Motorists in Northern Ireland are facing a zero-tolerance crackdown on drinking and driving, with new proposals meaning that a single pint would put drivers over the limit.

Ministers are considering a plan to bring drink laws in line with mainland Europe which would mean that drivers cannot touch a drop of alcohol.

Under the strict legislation a single drink of an alcoholic beverage would mean motorists failing a breath test.

The proposals have the backing of campaigners who have been battling for an outright ban on any drink for drivers for a number of years.

A spokesperson for the Hidden Victims of Road Deaths charity in Northern Ireland, Ursula Quinn, welcomed the move and said: "Unfortunately there is a hardcore of older drivers who have got away with it for a very long time.

"I would be saying total zero tolerance, that way there is no confusion. People can't say I'll have one pint or a half pint or a shandy, because it's diluted, they'll just say I don't drink and drive."

Alcohol and drugs are blamed for an average of 25 deaths and 119 serious injuries a year on the roads in Northern Ireland.

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