How Does Alcohol Affect our Driving Abilities?

Since childhood, we’ve been warned about the hazards of driving under the influence of alcohol. Simply mentioning the words “drunk driving” conjures scenes of swerving vehicles and flashing police lights.

But despite such public service initiatives to encourage drivers not to drink and drive, intoxicated drivers continue to engage in this risky behaviour, resulting in severe injuries and, unfortunately, even wrongful death for victims of these incidents!

Driving requires total focus, strong coordination, quick reflexes, and the ability to make proper assessments and safe decisions. It’s hardly surprising, then, that drinking alcohol reduces these cognitive skills necessary for safe driving.

Being aware of how alcohol affects our driving abilities and what the consequences of drink driving are can assist you in avoiding a drink driving arrest or anything worse. Besides, even having a legal BAC as low as 0.02 per cent can impair a driver’s ability to drive safely.

Safe Driving While Intoxicated? There is No Such Thing!

Australia has some of the strictest alcohol-driving laws globally, with the legal limit for full-license holders set at 0.05 blood alcohol content (BAC). In addition, learners and probationary licence holders must have a BAC of 0.00.

The blood alcohol concentration measures how much alcohol is present in an individual’s blood after drinking. The effect of alcohol is determined by your BAC rather than the specific amount of alcohol you’ve drunk. For example, if you have a 0.10 BAC, that implies that an individual’s blood supply contains one part alcohol for every 1,000 parts of blood.

The amount of alcohol-related impairment you feel increases as your blood alcohol concentration (BAC) rises. However, due to the tolerances that develop with persistent alcohol usage, there are many accounts of people with high BAC levels who exhibit no behavioural impairments on basic observation.

For a clearer picture, let’s take a closer look at how alcohol intake and blood alcohol concentration (BAC) may affect behaviour, judgement, physiology, and driving ability. Here are six adverse effects of drinking alcohol that directly result in poor driving performance:

  1. Decreased Focus

When driving, you’re doing a lot of things at the same time, from examining the speed limit to double-checking your mirrors and re-calibrating your spatial awareness. This typical standard required for driving requires intense concentration and focus, but after drinking alcohol, such intellect is usually diminished, making accidents more likely.

  1. Poor Comprehension

An intoxicated driver is less likely to understand traffic signs, signals, or a hazardous driving environment. This can impair their ability to respond effectively and slow down, come to a complete stop, or swerve out of the direction of a collision.

  1. Impaired Eyesight

Most drink driving accidents occur at night, as alcohol directly impairs night vision. Alcohol disturbs the eyeball’s thin outer layer, causing the aqueous gel to evaporate. When this happens, your eyesight and image quality is disrupted, making it difficult to see in the dark.

  1. Reduced Reaction Time

Alcohol can impair a driver’s fine and gross motor abilities, affecting hand-eye-foot coordination, making it more challenging to respond swiftly in an emergency.

  1. Inhibited Judgement

Thinking you can outrace a yellow light when drunk and overconfidence might lead to speeding through an intersection. This sort of hampered judgment frequently leads to police arrests and possible collisions.

  1. Drowsiness

Even at BACs of 0.01, it takes much less time to fall asleep than if you did not consume alcohol. So, even if you are within the legal limit, the drowsier you are, the more likely you will have a fatigue-related collision.

Here’s Where Interlock Device Installations Help!

To determine the quantity of alcohol in a person’s system, they can blow into a breathalyser for car ignition. An alcohol interlock is a breath-testing device connected to a vehicle’s ignition and stops a driver from starting a vehicle if they have been drinking alcohol. When an ignition interlock device is fitted, the driver must blow into the breathalyser for car ignition to allow the car to start.

Alcohol interlocks can be fitted to the engine of most vehicles, including cars, motorbikes, and trucks, to prevent drink driving. Breathalysers for car ignitions can also control access to types of machinery such as cranes or forklifts.

In addition, alcohol can still affect you the next day after drinking, leading to just as dangerous outcomes even if you stopped drinking several hours before. Therefore, having the safety net of a breathalyser for car ignition can ensure your safety even when you feel no physical effects from alcohol.

Why Choose Guardian Interlock for Your Interlock Device Installation?

If you want a breathalyser for car ignition, your first thought is probably, “Where can I get an interlock device installed near me?”.

At Guardian Interlock, we understand you have options for ignition interlock providers. Guardian Interlock is an independent, family-owned company that has provided alcohol ignition interlock programs – from interlock device installation to removing the interlock device – to safety-conscious individuals, private companies, and state authorities for over twenty years, preventing the operation of vehicles by impaired drivers.

Guardian Interlock manages alcohol interlock on behalf of our private and commercial customers who voluntarily install a Guardian alcohol interlock. These customers range from businesses enhancing their road safety posture to private individuals such as young drivers and those susceptible to problematic drinking and driving.

We provide voluntary interlock device installations, servicing and removing interlock devices to users in metropolitan and regional areas nationwide via our network of approved service centres.

Guardian understands your need for a vehicle, whether for work, commuting, family or other responsibilities. We’re dedicated to assisting clients to remain compliant and on the road. That is why our customer care representatives are available to take your calls 8.30-5.00 Monday to Fridays.

We also have an assistance line available 24 hours a day, seven days a week in an emergency. Please bear in mind that during COVID-19, the number of enquiries has increased so that delays may be incurred.

Guardian Interlock is one of Australia’s most reputable interlock suppliers, with locations across Australia. Therefore, you can be confident that your Guardian approved service centre is qualified for interlock device installation, servicing and removing interlock devices, and our devices comply with your state’s regulations. Email admin@guardianinterlock.com.au or call 1300 881 005 today to get started with your alcohol interlock program.

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