Safe driving requires clear judgement, concentration, and being able to react to what happens on the road. Alcohol and other drugs affect all of these. Alcohol is a drug that affects your skills, moods and behaviour. Once it has been consumed the effects of alcohol on driving cannot be reversed. The only thing that will sober you up is time.
Other drugs also impair your driving. Mixing one drug with another or mixing alcohol with other drugs dramatically increases your risk or crashing.
In NSW the Police have the power to:
- stop drivers at random to test for alcohol
- stop drivers at random to test for illegal drug use
- arrest drivers who test over the legal limit
- require a driver to undergo a sobriety test in certain circumstances
- arrest drivers they believe are impaired by drugs for the purpose of blood and urine testing
The Roads & Maritimes Services (RMS) provides more information on drink and drug driving offences and zero alcohol limit.
What you can do
The Plan B drink driving campaign is about making positive choices to get home safely after a night out, highlighting that driving is not an option. It presents practical options to avoid drink driving, but takes a humorous and positive approach designed to engage the community in conversation about making alternative arrangements to get home after a night out.
Things you can do to avoid drink or drug driving - your Plan B:
- Plan ahead and arrange alternative transport
- Share a taxi with friends
- Catch public transport
- Stay overnight at a friend's place
- Ride with a driver who hasn't been drinking or taking drugs
- Arrange for a friend or relative to give you a lift
A message to parents and caregivers
The message below has been provided as a community information initiative by The Kiama Liquor Accord.
Don't break the law
- If you choose to provide your under 18 year old child with alcohol they must be under your direct and active supervision at that time.
- It is against the law for you to provide alcohol to any other under 18 year old.
- It is against the law for an under 18 year old to be in possession of/to consume alcohol in a public place.
Supply of alcohol to minors
Before you supply alcohol to young people (under 18 years) STOP and think about your level of responsibility. Here you will find a few things that you should consider when making a decision about supplying alcohol to young people.
- It is an offence to supply alcohol to a minor (under 18) in a public place. This includes (but is not limited to) a park or beach. You may be fined $5,500 if you are caught supplying alcohol to under 18's in a public space.
- It is an offence to supply alcohol to a minor (under 18) on licensed premises. Minors are only permitted in designated areas within licensed premises.
- If you allow your child to consume alcohol at home and then go out to a party, you should ask yourself how safe he/she is going to be. Are you going to feel responsible if something happens? Remember that the risk of violence, sexual assault and accidents can increase when a person is under the influence of alcohol. Even if your child has not consumed excessive amounts of alcohol, you have no control over the amount of alcohol that others have consumed. Is your child going to be equipped to deal with potentially dangerous situations if their judgement is impaired by alcohol?
- If you are stopped by a young person and asked to buy alcohol on their behalf, think about how you would feel if something happened to them afterwards. You have a responsibility as an adult to help protect the young people in our community. If you do purchase or supply alcohol for someone under 18 years of age, you could be fined up to $5,500 or (in serious cases) up to $11,000 and/or 12 months in gaol.
- Under age parties involving alcohol can lead to problems within the community. As young people are learning to physically and psychologically deal with the effects of alcohol, there can be health and social risks. If you supply the alcohol, ask yourself if you then have to shoulder the responsibility if the young person damages property, harasses other members of the community or ends up in a fight.
- It is possible to overdose from alcohol. Young bodies are not equipped to deal with alcohol and this can result in long-term damage to a young person's organs and mental health. In the short term there is also a real danger of overdose, poisoning and even DEATH.
Additional information and videos can be found on the NSW Police website.
If you would like more information on drink and drug driving, please contact our Road Safety Officer on (02) 4232 0444.