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cjb77.pdfcjb77 
 AuthorDavid Saffron and Marilyn Chilvers 
 PublishedAugust 2003 
 Report typeCrime and Justice Bulletin No. 77 
 SubjectAlcohol, Driving offences, Recidivism / Re-offending 
 Keywordsprescribed concentration of alcohol (PCA), drink drivers, repeat offenders 
  
 

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Summary

Aim

Aim
In this bulletin we examine the sentencing of high-range PCA drink drivers in the context of their PCA offending history.

Abstract

Abstract
The risk of being involved in a serious car accident increases significantly when the driver’s blood alcohol range substantially exceeds the basic legal limit. In particular, the crash risk of a driver whose blood alcohol concentration reaches the high range (0.15 grams per 100 millilitres) prescribed concentration of alcohol (PCA) is 25 times that associated with a non-drinker. Repeat drink drivers constitute a particular risk to road safety. In this bulletin we examine the sentencing of high-range PCA drink drivers in the context of their PCA offending history. The study shows that, for offenders convicted of high-range PCA offences over the five years to June 2001, almost one-quarter were repeat drink drivers. Of these repeat offenders, more than half had a prior PCA conviction in the high range. The sentencing of high-range drink drivers is examined in relation to the frequency and nature of prior drink-driving convictions, and to the presence of concurrent driving convictions. The probability of imprisonment for a male aged 25-49 with no prior or concurrent drink-driving conviction is less than one per cent. This probability of imprisonment rises to around 76 per cent when the offender has three or more prior drink-driving convictions, and a concurrent driving conviction.