Get me home 24 Jun 2014

Army of England fans take to the road to keep their mates safe

Whether or not England finally manage a win when they play Costa Rica, fans watching the game in pubs and clubs are being urged to back the unsung heroes of the World Cup – the million plus drivers who will be forgoing alcohol and getting them home safely.

At least three million England supporters are expected to see the match in bars and restaurants. It is estimated more than a million of these will be driving and many will be taking passengers.

The RAC Foundation and the road safety partnership RoadSafe are asking fans to get behind their designated drivers and not to apply any pressure on them that might result in an accident.

While the past decade has seen the number of people killed or seriously injured in a crash involving drunk-drivers fall by more than half (55%) intoxicated motorists, particularly the young, are still a major hazard on Britain’s roads.

In 2012, 280 people were killed as a direct result of drink-driving crashes and drink-driving is a factor in approximately 1 in 6 of all road deaths. While 18% of all drivers or riders killed on the roads are over the alcohol limit, this rises to 23% for those aged 16-24.

To coincide with the England Game against Costa Rica the RAC Foundation is publishing Get Me Home: socialising, drinking and safe travel for young adults which was compiled by Independent Social Research.

The report’s authors engaged with young people to take a fresh look at their car travel habits on social occasions where the consumption of alcohol is involved. The research was commissioned to inform the development of effective communications and interventions aimed at making car travel safer in such circumstances.

The report says passengers have a responsibility not to:

  • distract the driver
  • pressure the driver into taking more passengers in the car than there is room for
  • travel without a seatbelt
  • get into a car with a drunk-driver.

The report was jointly commissioned by the RAC Foundation and RoadSafe and compiled with the assistance of the IAM. It was financially supported by the brewer AB InBev. 

Professor Stephen Glaister, Director of the RAC Foundation, said:

“Since 2005, alcohol consumption among young adults has declined by a third. Drink-driving has also declined markedly in recent years but it is still a significant cause of death and injury on the road.

“After England’s World Cup opener against Italy, Greater Manchester Police found that one in ten drivers stopped was over the limit.

“It is the responsibility of the person behind the wheel to stay sober but passengers can assist by acknowledging the help they’re getting from the designated driver and perhaps offering to drive next time round.”

Commenting on the key findings of the report, Adrian Walsh, Director of RoadSafe, said:

“The research highlights how important friends are in ensuring drivers stay sober. It also illustrates a responsible attitude among the young, but reinforces the need for reminders and incentives.”

Emma Reynolds, Corporate Affairs Director for AB InBev UK, said:

“As part of our commitment to promoting responsible drinking, we were keen to understand what more can be done to help young people get home safely after a night out.  We hope by reviewing what’s happening and what works, and speaking to young people themselves, this report will help those seeking to encourage safe travel home – from policy-makers and practitioners to campaigning organisations and marketeers – better to target their efforts.   It is particularly interesting to see what an important role passengers can play.”

Neil Greig, Director of Research and Policy at the IAM, said:

“The report gives valuable insight into how young people socialise these days and is a useful new tool for campaigners, the drinks industry and transport providers to ensure they play their part in getting everyone home safely.”

ENDS

Contacts:

RAC Foundation:

Philip Gomm – Head of External Communications

Philip.gomm@racfoundation.org | 020 7747 3445 | 07711 776448 | 020 7389 0601 (ISDN)

Notes to editors:

The RAC Foundation is a transport policy and research organisation that explores the economic, mobility, safety and environmental issues relating to roads and their users. The Foundation publishes independent and authoritative research with which it promotes informed debate and advocates policy in the interest of the responsible motorist.

The RAC Foundation is a registered charity, number 1002705.

RoadSafe is a road safety partnership between leading private sector companies in Britain, the government and road safety professionals. Its mission is to reduce road deaths and injuries by supporting and encouraging partnerships between the motor industry and other private sector businesses, traffic engineers, the police, public health authorities and road safety professionals to promote the safe design and use of vehicles and roads by sharing knowledge and encouraging innovation.

AB InBev is the world’s leading brewer and one of the top five global consumer goods companies. In the UK we brew and sell a wide range of award-winning beers, ales, stouts and ciders. They include global flagship brands such as Budweiser and Stella Artois, international brands such Beck’s as well as local favourites such as Bass and Boddingtons. Our beers have been popular in the UK for many years and we now employ around 1,000 people at our UK breweries in Magor, Samlesbury and Mortlake, as well as our UK company headquarters in Luton.

ABInBev UK’s financial contribution came from a Budweiser ‘give back’ pack sold in ASDA supermarkets between October and December 2013. The packs also featured responsible drinking messages, including ‘celebrate responsibly’, ‘designate a driver’ and ‘be considerate of others’.

AB InBev is a publicly traded company (Euronext: ABI) based in Leuven, Belgium, with American Depositary Receipts on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: BUD). It is the leading global brewer and one of the world’s top five consumer products companies. Beer, the original social network, has been bringing people together for thousands of years and our portfolio of well over 200 beer brands continues to forge strong connections with consumers. This includes global brands Budweiser®, Corona® and Stella Artois®; international brands Beck’s®, Leffe®, and Hoegaarden®; and local champions Bud Light®, Skol®, Brahma®, Antarctica®, Quilmes®, Victoria®, Modelo Especial®, Michelob Ultra®, Harbin®, Sedrin®, Klinskoye®, Sibirskaya Korona®, Chernigivske®, and Jupiler®. Anheuser-Busch InBev’s dedication to heritage and quality originates from the Den Hoorn brewery in Leuven, Belgium dating back to 1366 and the pioneering spirit of the Anheuser & Co brewery, with origins in St. Louis, USA since 1852. Geographically diversified with a balanced exposure to developed and developing markets, Anheuser-Busch InBev leverages the collective strengths of its more than 150,000 employees based in 24 countries worldwide. In 2013, AB InBev realized 43.2 billion USD revenue. The company strives to be the Best Beer Company in a Better World. For more information, please visit: www.ab-inbev.com.

The IAM is the UK’s leading independent road safety charity. We passionately believe that our roads can be made a safer place by improving the standards of the people who are using them. With over 50 years of experience, passion and insight, the IAM is uniquely positioned to help improve the skills and understanding of UK drivers, riders & cyclists.

The report is available to download:

http://www.racfoundation.org/assets/rac_foundation/content/downloadables/get_me_home_socialising_drinking_safer_travel_sykes_et_al_final_report_june_2014.pdf

Around the England v Italy game Greater Manchester Police breathalysed 258 drivers. Twenty five were arrested on suspicion of drink-driving.

http://www.mancunianmatters.co.uk/content/170669398-one-ten-drivers-breathalysed-manchester-were-drink-driving-over-opening-world-cup

Research by the British Beer and Pub Association showed estimated how many people watched the England games in pubs during the 2010 World Cup.

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/301999/BBPAresponse.pdf

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