THINK! campaign reveals the hidden cost of a humble pint

12.00 | 1 March 2013 | | 5 comments

 A £50,000 pint of beer was unveiled in London last week as part of the latest THINK! campaign highlighting the consequences of a drink-drive conviction.

The costly pint, housed in a protective glass case and surrounded by security guards, was revealed in Leadenhall Market by Stephen Hammond, road safety minister.

 Stephen Hammond said: “It might only look like a humble pint of beer, but it could end up costing much more than a few quid – in fact it comes with an eye-watering hidden cost if it pushes you over the limit.

“Most people know not to drink and drive but a small number still do, which is why we are highlighting the consequences of a drink drive conviction through our THINK! campaign.

“Anyone thinking of drinking and driving should be without any doubt – if you are caught driving over the limit you will face a heavy court fine and lose your licence – you could even go to prison.”

The latest £1.68m THINK! campaign will see the ‘Consequences’ drink drive adverts being re-aired on TV during the spring months. The advert features a barman morphing into a range of characters – including a policeman, a magistrate, an employer and a car dealer – to show the potential consequences of drink driving.

Chief Constable Suzette Davenport, from the Association of Chief Police Officers, said: “Drivers need to be aware there are several ways for police to catch drink drivers, so it’s not a matter of if you get caught, it’s when.  

“Over the Christmas period last year police breathalysed more than 20,000 extra drivers compared to the previous year. As a result of this, there are drivers who never thought they would be caught but are now facing fines, driving bans and a criminal record.”

The Institute of Advanced Motorists estimates the personal financial cost of drink-drive conviction at between £20,000 and £50,000. The calculation reflects the fines, legal costs, rise in insurance premiums and possible job losses faced by those who are convicted.

Simon Best, IAM chief executive, said: “The total personal cost of a drink driving conviction was a lot more than we expected. £50,000 is an awful lot to pay for just one more drink.

“On top of the up-front financial costs, the long-term impact on earnings can be serious if you factor in the stigma of a criminal record. Alcohol affects everyone differently and your limit can change depending on a large number of factors – it’s best to make it none for the road.”


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    AIRSO believes very strongly that whilst maintaining the message about drink driving we really need to tackle alcohol in society at a higher level in order not only to impact on those who choose to drive but also the loss of life through illness and aggressive behaviour. In turn this will then add to the loss of live and injury on the road.

    Graham Feest, Secretary
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    Even one drink can affect your driving ability. So why not a Zero alcohol limit. In Ireland the limit for professional and ‘L’ drivers is 20mgs. However, for the average driver it’s 50mgs. Over the last few years the message regarding drinking and driving appears to be getting accross. Still, thre will always be the minority who have drink taken will think that they are either OK to driver or even a better driver.

    Tom Harrington
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    I like this campaign and I’m glad to see that the minister is concentrating on a message to drivers who drink over the limit. It is absolutely fine for the Road Safety fraternity to promote a “Don’t drive and drive” message and I strongly support this. However some anti drink drive advertising in the recent past has leaned towards criminalising those who have even one drink but who are not breaking the law of the land. In my opinion, this campaign strikes the right balance.

    Pat, Wales
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    At last, a realistic approach towards reducing accidents. I think more traffic police are needed to tackle drink/drug driving and driving without due care.

    Phil, Kent
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    Last time I was in London the price of a pint wasn’t far off that anyway…

    Dave, Leeds
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