Getting my beer goggles on

Reaction times with alcohol LV=

The whole drink-driving thing is terrifying – don’t you think? I was invited along to an event by LV= recently to test out my driving skills whilst simulating the affects of different levels of alcohol being in my system.

We were put to the test by wearing quite literally ‘beer goggles’. These goggles affect your vision and the different ones represented a different number of units. Once we had them on, we did different tests to see how our reaction times were affected through doing quizzes on an iPad and also a car driving simulator.

Here's Laura trying to do the reaction times tests.

I have incredibly strong feelings towards drink driving as I won’t personally touch a drop before getting behind the wheel. Also, I’m very conscious of driving the next day and it genuinely shocks me when others seem to think they’re OK to drive after consuming large amounts of alcohol the night before. If anyone is in any doubt of this, I suggest you try out this calculator by Morning After to check.

LV= designed the event to raise awareness of how alcohol can affect driving and I found it pretty scary. Putting on the goggles was a bit of a wake-up call for me as I recognised the way they affected my sight from previous drunken experiences (without a car, I hasten to add). Seeing my reaction times changing dramatically really hit home on how dangerous it is to drink-drive – even when having up to 4 units simulated, it was a big change. When I think how I could easily still have that quantity of alcohol in my system the morning after the night before, it makes me concerned for those who choose to drive the next day.

Anyone in favour of breathalysing people at a McDonalds on a Sunday morning? I think it would be a great idea.

I want to say a big thank you to LV= for putting on such an informative event. Back in 2014, there were 240 deaths due to drink driving. That’s 240 families losing a child in an entirely avoidable situation.

It takes 1 hour for your body to breakdown a unit of alcohol from when you finish your last drink. There are 3 units in one large glass of wine (250ml). So those nights when you finish work and head straight to the pub? If you started drinking wine at 6pm, drinking 2 large glasses an hour until 9pm, you will have consumed 6 glasses of wine and 18 units*. That alcohol won’t be out of your system entirely until 3pm the following day.

*And yes, this is what is medically classed as ‘binge drinking’, but let’s face it, for a young professional, this is probably the most relatable scenario.

So tell me, what are your thoughts? I’d be really interested to hear what you think in the comments.

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