The Morning After – what happens ?

If you’ve been drinking the night before, there could still be alcohol in your system the morning after. Whether you should drive the next morning depends on how much you’ve drunk – and if you’ve left enough time for your system to get rid of the alcohol.

It takes your body one hour to process one standard drink, that’s half a pint of beer, a small glass of wine or a pub measure of spirits. However, it may take longer than that, as other factors – such as body size, or how recently you’ve eaten – can also have an effect. If you went to bed in the early hours and didn’t get a good night’s sleep, this will magnify the impairing effects of any alcohol in your system.


12% of all drink driving arrests occur between 8am and 2pm.

12% of all drink driving arrests occur between 8am and 2pm and of those, almost a third happen on a Sunday, peaking between 11am and 2pm. So it is critical that drivers take measures to ensure their safety and the safety of others and this means leaving the car at home and making alternative arrangements for the morning after if they need to get somewhere. It’s just not worth the chance if you are still over the legal limit.

983 fatal collisions occurred on Irish roads between 2008 and 2012, claiming the lives of 1,077 people. The forensic details of 867 fatal collisions were analysed to identify the cause of the collisions – of these, alcohol was a main contributory factor in 330 collisions, claiming the lives of 366 people. A further 69 people were seriously injured. 1 in 10 of all driver alcohol related collisions occurred between 7am and 11am.

Drivers need to be aware that they may not be safe to drive the morning after a night out, as they may still have alcohol in their system.

Drink Driving in Ireland – Watch Video

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