Call for zero blood alcohol for under 25s
Need for legal change: Michael Thorn says young people drink and drive far too often. Photo: Supplied
All drivers aged under 25 should be restricted to a zero blood alcohol limit, a public health group says.
The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education says young people are disproportionately represented in road accidents, and laws should be changed to reflect that. "Young people still tend to drink and drive far too often, and we need to get the message out that it is not right," chief executive Michael Thorn said.
In 2011, 21 per cent of all drivers and motorcycle riders in fatal crashes were aged between 17 and 25, but they represented only 14 per cent of licence-holders, he said.
The blood alcohol recommendation is one of 28 the Foundation made in a submission to a state government inquiry into alcohol abuse among young people.
Others include reducing opening hours, charging venues for the cost of alcohol-related harms, and banning sales of double-shot drinks after 10pm.
"I don't know how many times we have to say it, but limiting operating hours is what the evidence shows will give us the most bang for our buck," said Mr Thorn, who will run a session on alcohol availability at the NSW Alcohol Summit at Parliament House on Thursday.
He said a crackdown on on-campus drinking was also needed.
"What the data actually shows is university campuses are where the highest levels of binge drinking are happening". He said alcohol sponsorship of university clubs and sporting teams should be banned.
Kypros Kypri, an expert in alcohol-related harm from the University of Newcastle, said overseas research had found drinking levels were higher among students.