Britons warned of fines, points and a driving ban for being drunk in the passenger seat

Drink driving: UK police send warning after increase in arrests

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As millions look to go out for the Platinum Jubilee bank holiday weekend, drivers are being warned of massive fines if they drive drunk. Anyone supervising a “designated” learner driver while they are over the legal drinking limit can face massive consequences.

If they are found to be doing so, they risk fines of up to £2,500, 10 points on their licence, or even a ban from driving.

This can all apply, even if they are not at the wheel.

James Armstrong, CEO of Veygo, sent a warning to drivers, urging them to plan ahead if they are looking to drink this weekend and to ensure everyone involved remains safe.

He said: “Lots of us will want to make the most of an extra day off this bank holiday by having a few drinks. 

“So making arrangements for post-pub lifts will be at the front of people’s minds. 

“A student or teenager who is learning to drive, looking to get in some extra practice and earn some extra cash might seem like a good candidate.

“Parents of learner drivers – or their friends – might be tempted to offer taxi money in exchange for a lift home, and cash-strapped learners might be happy to accept.

“But many people don’t realise that accepting a lift from a learner – no matter how confident they are – means that, as a qualified driver, you are responsible for control of the vehicle. 

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“This means that you must comply with the rules you would normally adhere to if you were in the driving seat – including being under the drink drive limit.”

The Government has approved longer opening hours for pubs over the course of the weekend, with millions set to go out.

Pubs will be able to stay open until 1am in celebration of the Queen’s Jubilee.

The two hour extension will cover Thursday, Friday and Saturday – in a legal change approved for the occasion.

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Mr Armstrong continued, saying: “If you’ve enjoyed one-too-many before getting in the passenger seat with a learner driver at the wheel, you could face 10 points on your licence, a fine of up to £2,500, a three-month prison sentence or a potential driving ban.

“You also need to make sure you’re qualified to supervise a learner in the first place. 

“Supervisors must be at least over the age of 21, have held their licence for three years and be insured on the vehicle.

“So if you’re planning on having a few drinks, it’s best to avoid pulling in favours from learners and draw straws among those with full driving licences as to who will be the designated driver.  

“Designated drivers can always take out temporary insurance from as little as one hour so they’re covered while they play the role of taxi.”

Drivers are also being warned of traffic chaos in the coming days as almost 20 million look to get away for the weekend.

The RAC is warning drivers to set off as early as possible or delay their trips until much later in the day to skip any congestion.

The M25, southbound M5, A303 and A720 Edinburgh city bypass are all highlighted as roads to watch for potential delays.

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