Skip navigation

47% of Brits would shop a drink driver

Some 47 per cent of Brits would report a drink driver to police, according to exclusive research by Confused.com.

Alcoholic drinks on a bar counter

Almost half of Brits would report a potential drink driver to the police, according to new research.

A survey carried out by Confused.com has found that 47 per cent of Brits would report someone planning to get behind the wheel after drinking a large quantity of alcohol.

Of this group, the majority – 54 per cent – would call 999 even if a friend or family member was involved.

And 48 per cent of would-be informants say they would tell the authorities if their spouse or partner was planning to drink drive.

A quarter of Brits admit drink driving

The study also found that more than a quarter of motorists admitted having driven after consuming alcohol.

And around one in six said there should be a total ban on driving after drinking, as opposed to the current UK limit of 80 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood.

Gemma Stanbury, head of car insurance at Confused.com, said: "We want passengers to turn down lifts from friends or family members who have been drinking.

"We urge anyone who sees someone get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol to report it to the police.

"By passing information regarding drink drivers on to the police, members of the public could well prevent a family experiencing tragedy this Christmas.

"This will also lead to irresponsible motorists being brought before the courts."

Report drink drivers by text message

A number of police forces are running campaigns over the festive period encouraging members of the public to report potential drink drivers.

Some forces provide text message numbers to make it easier for concerned citizens to pass on suspects' details.

Stanbury added: "It's a positive sign that so many Brits would act responsibly and inform the police if they believed someone was going to drink and drive."

She also said that motorists who drink and drive could put their car insurance cover at risk.

Car insurance cover risk for drink drivers

Alcoholic drink with car keys beside"Many insurers have a clause which allows them to refuse to pay out in the event of an accident that occurs while the driver is under the influence of drink or drugs," Stanbury explained.

"Further repercussions for these convicted drivers might also include increased car insurance premiums and difficulties in finding a provider to insure them.

"These are all additional reasons not to get behind the wheel after having a drink this festive season."

The amount of alcohol someone can drink while remaining under the legal limit depends on a number of factors.

This includes weight, gender, metabolism, stress levels and how recently you have eaten, according to charity Drinkaware.

No foolproof way of drinking & staying under limit

A Drinkaware spokesman said: "There is no foolproof way of drinking and staying under the limit.

"Even small amounts of alcohol can affect your ability to drive so the only safe advice is to avoid any alcohol if you are driving."

The Confused.com research found that 4,424 people were arrested under suspicion of drink driving in December last year, a drop of 19 per cent on 2011.

Would you help a 'drunk' into his car?

Confused.com carried out an experiment last year, in which an apparently drunk man asked a number of passers-by for help getting into his car.

How many people do you think helped him?

What do you think?

Would you report a drink driver?

We want to hear from you! You can share your views on our message board below.

Compare car insurance - you could find a great deal in minutes

Get a car insurance quote




Like this? Share it


Alcohol: did you know?

In the UK, the alcohol limit for drivers is:

  • 80 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood
  • 35 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath
  • 107 milligrammes per 100 millilitres of urine


Chris Torney

Chris Torney

Chris is the former personal finance editor at the Daily Express. He's been a journalist for more than 10 years and contributes to a wide range of finance and business titles.Read more from Chris



Most popular articles


Compare car insurance

You could find a great deal in minutes

Compare Car Insurance

Get a QuickQuote on car insurance in seconds with Confused.com

Confused.com alcohol units calculator

Alcohol units calculator

The safest bet is to not drive if you've consumed any alcohol at all. But you can work out how many units your drinks contain with our alcohol units calculator.