Thursday 23rd June 2016
Be aware of how much you’re drinking at weddings.

To drink and drive is dangerous, irresponsible and not to mention, illegal. But many forget just how long it takes for alcohol to leave your system. This means, unknowingly, many are getting behind the wheel the following morning whilst still being over the legal limit.

Rob Hull, The Mail Online, reports:

Guests drink more alcohol at a single wedding than the recommended weekly amount - and then one in ten drive the next day, warns insurer

  • Poll found average alcohol wedding consumption was almost 15 units
  • Wedding season month of June second most likely for breath tests
  • NHS stats show it takes about 15 hours for body to break down 15 units

The average guest drinks 14.82 units of alcohol during a day spent celebrating a wedding - exceeding the consumption recommendation for a week in just 24 hours.

And one in ten wedding goers then drives home the next day, despite believing they could be over the limit, according to a new study - putting lives at risk on the road and endangering their licence.

The new research pointed out that the wedding season in the month of June is the second most likely time a driver will be breathalysed, accounting for 14 per cent of all road-side alcohol tests last year.

Not a sparkling performance: One in ten drive home the day after attending a wedding despite worrying they might be over the drink driving limit

The 14.82 units figure was judged to be the average consumption consumed at wedding parties at 100 venues around the country.

On average, each guest enjoyed two glasses of sparkling wine and half a bottle of wine during the day plus five additional alcoholic drinks later in the evening. In total, it's also the equivalent of more than eight small glasses of wine.

Of 2,001 people surveyed, half think they drink less than the weekly alcohol allowance during a wedding day celebration - 46 per cent guessed that they only consumed an average of 8.3 units.

But the figure that’s causing concern is that 10 per cent of those quizzed said they drove home after a wedding last year, despite fearing they could be over the limit.

According to information supplied by the NHS, it would take almost 15 hours for the body to break down 14.82 units of alcohol, although this is indicative and will vary from person to person and from day to day.

The research also found that one in ten (11 per cent) of wedding guests that planned to avoid drinking alcohol at nuptials in the last year changed their mind, drank alcohol and still drove home.

A further three per cent had intended to stay sober but ended up sleeping in their car.

As a result, wedding guests are routinely risking prosecution not only by driving home the evening after celebrations but also the next morning, when they could still be over the drink drive limit of 80 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood.

Rob Miles said: 'The wedding season is now well underway and it’s no surprise that those who drink will want to raise a few toasts in celebration with their friends and family.

'However, with many hotels asking guests to vacate rooms before midday, there is a risk that many people driving home the day after wedding celebrations will be over the limit.

'We urge people to plan ahead and take public transport if possible when attending wedding celebrations, or to leave plenty of time before getting behind the wheel.'

Three per cent who intend to stay sober at a wedding but succumb to the lure of the bar end up sleeping in their car that night

The research reveals the typical bar bill for a wedding runs to £2,095 for 100 guests in the UK and on average just 15 per cent of guests do not drink alcohol, meaning the majority of attendees should make contingency plans to ensure they can travel home safely.

And it's not just about being over the drink drive limit.

If guests only drink beer throughout the celebrations they will consume on average of 1,996 calories just through alcohol, or 1,275 calories if they are drinking wine - a significant amount towards the recommended daily calorie intake of 2,500 calories for men and 2,000 calories for women in liquid alone.

Whilst celebrating with the bride and groom is perfectly advisable, staying aware of your alcohol consumption, especially if you’re the driving the following day, needs to be at the forefront of your mind. 

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