How to report a drink driver
Drink driving can kill. If you need to report a drink driver, here’s how to do it
Everybody knows drink driving is against the law. Yet, in 2019 in England and Wales alone, over 55,000 people were caught over the limit by the police.1
Drink driving wrecks lives. An estimated 7,800 people were killed or injured in drink driving accidents in the UK in 2019.2
Perhaps even more shockingly, in 2019/20 more than one in twenty drivers in England and Wales (5%) admitted they thought they’d been over the limit while behind the wheel in the previous 12 months.3
That’s why the police advice is clear – if you see a car driving dangerously, or you suspect someone who is drunk is planning to drive, you should report them to keep the roads safe.
But how do you do it? Read on to find out more.
There are strict legal alcohol limits for UK drivers. It’s not possible to say how much alcohol you can drink and stay below the limit, as everyone’s affected differently depending on their weight, age, sex and metabolism – or even what they’ve eaten, or their stress levels. In fact, the safest advice is not to drive if you have had any alcohol at all.
So, what does that mean if you think someone else has drunk too much and is planning to drive? Ultimately, if you think they aren’t fit to drive, you should report it.
The police advise you should only try to talk to someone if you feel it is safe to do so.
So, while it’s a smart idea to talk to a friend, think twice if it’s a stranger – there’s a possibility they might get violent or abusive.
If you’re out at a bar, tell security or bar staff that you’re worried. They’re trained to safely intervene.
If you want to report a drink driver after the drink driving has taken place, you can call the police on 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. Remember, someone can still be over the legal alcohol limit the day after drinking.
Last Reviewed: 28th October 2021
Next Review due: 28th October 2024