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Sober Up!

Published: 09/3/15

Sober up is a new, free, interactive e-learning resource designed to obliterate many of the harmful myths that surround drinking and drug taking whilst driving. Both by its format and design, Sober up, is clearly aimed at young people and is particularly relevant to anyone who works with young people or drivers, including: driving instructors; teachers; youth workers; community leaders; employers; and emergency services and road safety professionals.

Unfortunately, the fact remains that young people are much more likely to be involved in a drink or drug-drive crash, so educational initiatives such as this could be life-saving. Brake tells us that less than one in 11 licence holders is under 25, yet one in four (28%) drink-drive crashes involve a driver of this age [1]. With a new, lower drink drive limit in Scotland and a new drug drive law coming into force across the UK in March, Brake is encouraging to educators, organisations and community leaders to promote the ‘not a drop, not a drag’ message. They suggest that this open access resource can be used to facilitate group discussions and present the facts on drink and drug-driving within a lesson, workshop or through online communications. Brake is especially encouraging professionals who work with young people to use ‘Sober up’ as part of a wider road safety awareness programme. This is also supported by a series of UK wide, low-cost training courses on engaging young people in road safety – see their website for further details.

The launch of this resource comes as the Association of Chief Police Officers and Police Scotland reveal the results of their drink-drive enforcement campaign over the festive period. Police caught 6,236 drivers over the limit in the UK during the four-week targeted campaign. Across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the breathe-test failure rate for under-25s was 6.33%, compared to 3.94% for drivers over that age. In Scotland, the numbers dropped considerably after the introduction of a lower drink drive limit in December.

It also comes just ahead of the UK’s new law prohibiting driving with drugs in your body coming into force 2 March, which aims to make it easier for police to catch and prosecute drug drivers. This new law will make it a criminal offence to drive under the influence of drugs, with specified zero-tolerance limits enforced with roadside drug testing devices. Those found guilty will face a maximum six month jail sentence, £5,000 fine, and automatic 12 month driving ban. The law is also known as Lillian’s Law, after 14 year old Croydon school girl Lillian Groves, killed outside her home by a speeding driver on cannabis in June 2010. The tireless campaigning of her family has been instrumental in bringing about these changes.

To view Sober up click here

Further details on Brake training courses - http://brake.org.uk/campaigns-events/events-training/roadsafetyseminars/11-whats-happening/conferences-training-awards/1316-training-courses-engage-young-people-on-road-safety

1] Reported drinking and driving statistics tables 2012, Department for Transport 2013

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