Half of drinkers who think they are fit to drive are wrong: study – Consumer Health News

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WEDNESDAY, December 8, 2021 (HealthDay News) – If you think you can drive after drinking, chances are you are wrong, new research shows.

The study found that despite exceeding the legal driving limit, half of the participants believed it was safe to drive.

The study included 90 volunteers, an average of 24 years old, in Germany who drank wine or beer until they reached a maximum breath alcohol concentration (BrAC) of 0, 11%. They did it on two different days.

In Germany, the legal driving limit is a BrAC of 0.05%. The proportion of participants who said they had reached this legal limit when they had already exceeded it was 39% on the first day and 53% on the second day, according to the study published on December 7 in the Harm Reduction Journal.

“In countries where alcohol limits are legal, it is usually the driver who judges the amount of alcohol he has drunk and his ability to drive. But as we have shown, we are not always good at making this judgment. because one in two people in our study underestimated how drunk we are – and that can have devastating consequences, ”said Kai Hensel, study manager, University of Witten / Herdecke, Germany , and the University of Cambridge, UK.

The researchers also found that the more drunk they were, the less participants rated their BrAC level.

“This could have serious consequences in England and Wales, where the legal driving limit is higher, as it suggests that a significant number of people could misjudge how drunk they are and consider themselves fit to drive. when in fact they have a potentially dangerously high level of alcohol in their blood, ”Hensel said in a Cambridge press release.

The BrAC level in England, Wales and the United States is 0.08%.

“Really, the best advice is if you’re driving, just don’t drink. But if you really feel like drinking, look at your own tolerance for alcohol. It differs from person to person, depending on who you are. your gender, weight and age, and there are reliable apps that can guide you, ”Hensel said.

More information

The United States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has more information on drunk driving.

SOURCE: University of Cambridge, press release, December 6, 2021

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