Police catch 151 motorists a day for drink driving in summer blitz
Police have detected over 4,500 drink-drive motorists and over 1,000 drivers taking illegal drugs in a month-long summer crackdown.
The figures published by the National Police Chiefs’ Council show that 45,267 drivers were stopped for a breath test between 10 June and 10 July this year, with a total of 4,539 (10%) classed as positive, refused or failed, equating to 151 drivers a day.
This compares to last summer’s campaign when 60,096 breath tests were administered, of which 5,085 (8.5%) were positive, refused or failed.
In addition, 2,588 drug screen tests were administered, of which 1,028 were positive (39.7%). Figures for last year were not available.
The NPCC said its campaign this year showed the benefits of a targeted approach through intelligence drink drive hotspots, with fewer tests administered but a higher proportion of positive results.
National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Roads Policing, chief constable Suzette Davenport said: “It is encouraging to see that our intelligence-led approach continues to work – fewer tests administered but increased criminal justice outcomes, with forces actively targeting hotspots and using their local knowledge to get drink and drug drivers off our roads.
“Even though this has been a successful summer campaign, it is still disappointing to see during the campaign over 4500 people drink driving and over 1000 people driving whilst under the influence of drugs. We remind those who drive when intoxicated that police forces across the country are better equipped than ever before to detect and prosecute drivers who ignore the law.
“We continue to see the benefit of the new drug driving law and swab kits with nearly 40% of those being screened testing positive at the road-side and being prevented from causing harm to other road users.”
However, Gary Rae, director of communications and campaigns for Brake said the figures show “worrying signs”, adding: “With traffic police numbers on the decline, it’s leaving those who enforce the law with very little resources to catch those who do break the law and despite the police claims of a successful targeted strategy, the degree to which this is actually the case is impossible to know.
“We’re calling on the Government to make traffic policing a priority to ensure we have a suitably strong deterrent against unacceptable behaviour on the road. Not only to tackle those who drink or drug drive, but to crack down on any road user who breaks the law.”