Police should be given special powers to breath-test any motorist they choose, according to experts.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) said that recent figures about young drink-drivers underlined the urgent need for a reduction in the drink-dive limit by almost a half and for police to breathalyse drivers anywhere and at any time.

Kevin Clinton, head of road safety RoSPA, said: “We have seen a worrying increase in the number of drink-drive related deaths in recent years and we have to do something to stop that".

"Studies have shown that by cutting the drink-drive limit from 80mg to 50mg would save 65 lives and 230 serious injuries on Britain's roads each year."

"Just because we have a legal limit of 80mg does not mean to say it is a safe limit. Between 50mg and 80mg you are between two and two-and-a-half times more likely to crash and six times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident."

Clinton added that a reduced limit would be an ideal opportunity to kick-start the drink drive-campaign by putting out new messages to educate the public and address young drivers who may have missed out on the impact of earlier campaigns.

“We have to make it clear to all generations that drink-driving is socially unacceptable and costs lives", he concluded.