Blind drunk

Imagine getting behind the wheel if you couldn't see cars and pedestrians on the side of the road. Or if your vision were so distorted that you had tunnel vision. If you drink and drive, this is exactly what might happen.

Peripheral (side) vision is crucial for safe driving and is dangerously affected by drinking. South Africans Against Drunk Driving designed this graphic to illustrate how a few drinks impair one’s ability to perceive objects on the side of the road. 



Other typical effects of drinking

  • Limited ability to judge distances between both stationary and moving objects
  • Difficulty negotiating a car in or out of a parking spot
  • Increased difficulty to adjust to sudden darkness
  • Difficulty in maintaining a constant speed
  • Increased time before the driver reacts to an emergency situation by stepping on the brake or correcting the steering

How alcohol increases one’s chances of having an accident

No. Units Blood Alcohol C. Breath Alcohol C. Effects on driving skills Chance of having an accident
1 0.02 0.1 Slight impairment of judgement  
2 0.04 0.2    


0.24 Less than this = Legal limit 4 x chance
3 0.06 0.3 Some loss co-ord/slow judgement  
4 0.08 0.4    
5 0.1 0.5 Impaired peripheral vision/ fine co-ordination  
6 0.12 0.6    
7 0.14 0.7   18 x chance
8 0.16 0.8 Double vision, plus all above 30 x chance
9 0.18 0.9   50 x chance
10 0.2 1   80 x chance
11 0.22 1.1 Stupor and confusion 120 x chance
12 0.24 1.2   150 x chance

Blood alcohol content calculations

How much can you drink before you exceed the legal limit? Click here to learn how blood alcohol levels are calculated.

Blood alcohol tool

Are you above the legal limit? Calculate your blood alcohol level before you pick up your keys.

(Ilse Pauw and Denzil Daniels, Health24, September 2010)


South Africans Against Drunk Driving

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