Christmas drink-drive crackdown underway

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Lancashire Police’s Christmas drink and drug driving campaign gets underway today.

The festive crackdown will see high-profile enforcement activity taking place across the county throughout December, including checkpoints at key locations where officers will administer drink and drugs tests.

Last year more than 280 people were caught drink driving in Lancashire during the police’s Christmas drink drive campaign.

A total of 18,964 tests were administered throughout December with 274 people, or 1.4%, failing the test and seven people (0.04%), refusing to provide a specimen. This means the total number of people who failed or refused the test was 281 (1.5%).

Chief Insp. Debbie Howard said: “We want people to have fun this Christmas but to remember the consequences of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

“If you drive at twice the legal alcohol limit you are at least 30 times more likely to cause a road crash than a driver who hasn’t been drinking, potentially resulting in serious injury or death. A conviction could also mean you lose your job, home, family and friends. The consequences can be absolutely devastating.

“We will be working throughout the festive period to keep the public safe and we want people to enjoy the festive season but to remember the consequences of driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Our message is simple – do not drink and drive and do not take drugs and drive.”

Clive Grunshaw, Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “The message to Lancashire’s residents this Christmas is clear – do not drink and drive.

“Christmas is a time to have fun and socialise with family and friends, but the consequences of getting behind the wheel after drinking or taking drugs could be absolutely devastating.

“I am fully supportive of the Constabulary’s campaign to target people who risk both their own lives and the lives of those around them this Christmas.”

County Coun. John Fillis, Lancashire County Council cabinet member for highways and transport, added: “It has taken decades of hard work to change attitudes to drink driving and we’re working this Christmas to make sure the message is not lost on a new generation of drivers.

“The statistics tell their own story, driving while under the influence of drink or drugs is a risk simply not worth taking.

“I’d ask people to remember many people fail breath tests between 6am and 11am after drinking the night before, and you could still be risking lives if you drive the next morning.”