How soon can you drive after you drink?

Pretoria News Weekend - - HEALTH -

WHETHER it is safe to drive the morn­ing after drink­ing de­pends on how much al­co­hol the body has to get rid of and how long it has had to do so.

The body can process about one unit of al­co­hol – the equiv­a­lent 236ml of lager – an hour. In gen­eral a driver is put over the limit by 946ml of lager or two small glasses of wine but this can vary widely de­pend­ing on sex, age, weight and phys­i­cal well­be­ing.

Dr Paul Wal­lace, chief med­i­cal ad­viser of char­ity Drinkaware, said: “Imag­ine you’re drink­ing un­til three or four in the morn­ing and you wake up at 8am.

“If you’ve had six or seven units, you could still have sev­eral units of al­co­hol in your body when you start your day. “With sev­eral units of al­co­hol still in your body you would still be over the drink-drive limit. “Hav­ing a cup of cof­fee or a cold shower won’t do any­thing at all to get rid of the al­co­hol. “They may make you feel slightly dif­fer­ent but they haven’t elim­i­nated the al­co­hol in any way.” If the body pro­cesses one unit of al­co­hol per hour, some­one who fin­ishes drink­ing at 3am and starts driv­ing at 11am would typ­i­cally have pro­cessed eight units of al­co­hol. If they drank six 175ml glasses of wine, this is about 14 units, mean­ing that the average driver would still have six units of al­co­hol in their sys­tem. – Daily Mail

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