Services > Drink & Drug Driving



Alcohol related crashes are an area of high concern and identified as a major road safety issue throughout the cluster. SWDC and CDC - Number of alcohol related crashes higher than National Average.

National statistics indicate that in 2020, alcohol was a factor in 90 deaths &  was a factor in 262 serious injuries


The second biggest contributing factor to road crashes in New Zealand, alcohol seriously affects your driving by slowing your reaction times and affecting your senses and judgement. 

Being a responsible driver means never driving when you're over the permitted blood alcohol level as it may impair your judgement.

The impact of alcohol on driving

You risk causing death and serious injury to yourself and other people if you drive under the influence of alcohol.

Once absorbed into your bloodstream, alcohol enters your vital organs, including your brain. The result is slowed reactions along with dulled judgement and vision, all of which impair your ability to drive. Alcohol can also increase the risk of fatigue.

Two hundred and fifty micrograms per litre of breath or 50 milligrams per 100 millilitres of blood is the current legal limit for drivers 20 years or older. At this limit, you're still twice as likely to have a crash as a driver that has a zero-blood alcohol level.

Some of the extensive costs of drink-driving related crashes are:

  • death and injury
  • emotional harm
  • long-term financial costs
  • legal charges (ranging from manslaughter to 'over the limit')
  • penalties (including imprisonment, loss of licence and/or disqualification and fines)
  • loss of insurance cover.

Drive sober

    • Everyone's perception of how much they can drink is different, but the law is precise: if you're over 20 years of age the legal blood alcohol limit for driving is no more than 50 milligrams of alcohol for every 100mls of blood.

    • There is a zero alcohol limit if you are under 20. That means if you drive after consuming even one drink, you can be charged with drink-driving.

    • Be prepared: if you're planning on drinking, plan not to drive.

    • Don't go along with other people's bad decisions to drive while they're impaired by alcohol or drugs.


Drug Driving Laws - Are you safe to drive? 

Ask a doctor or pharmacist if the drugs you are taking could affect your driving ability. It is illegal to drive while impaired by drugs – even legally prescribed drugs. This page contains questions and answers on legislation to combat drug impaired driving:

Check to see if you are safe to drive Here. If you aren't sure, check with your GP. 

What about you?

is a campaign to promote low risk drinking, low drug use and mental wellbeing in the Wairarapa. A number of local organisations and agencies are involved in the campaign. You can find out more about the initiative and who's involved here. A range of resources have been developed as part of the campaign.

You can view these here on the community collaborative website WhataboutU



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