Major drink-driving crackdown launched

SUFFOLK police launched their summer drink-driving crackdown against irresponsible and dangerous drivers today .The campaign is part of a national one targeting those who think drinking or taking drugs before getting behind the wheel of a car is acceptable.

SUFFOLK police launched their summer drink-driving crackdown against irresponsible and dangerous drivers today .

The campaign is part of a national one targeting those who think drinking or taking drugs before getting behind the wheel of a car is acceptable.

Chief Inspector Martin Barnes-Smith, head of Suffolk Constabulary's traffic unit, said: “Our message is quite simple - if you drink and drive and think you can get away with it - you are wrong, we will catch you out.

“Drink and drug driving is a problem all year but with warmer weather and more relaxed atmosphere during the summer, the temptation is often greater to take a risk.

“We urge people not to put their friends, families or members of the public at risk by drink or drug driving.

“Passengers can also help by refusing to be driven by someone who has been drinking or taking drugs, and by appointing a designated driver who does not drink or take drugs.

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“Remember also, that by drinking alcohol the night before you could still be over the drink drive limit well into the following day. There is no such thing as a 'safe' limit and the answer is not to drink at all if you are driving.”

Although Suffolk police target drink and drug drivers 365 days of the year, the summer months, along with Christmas, are traditionally thought of as a time of the year when the number of drink-drivers peak.

From today, through to September 2, officers will be working together with their Suffolk Road Safe partners to tackle the problem, with the aim of reducing the number of killed or seriously injured people on the county's roads.

Throughout the duration of the campaign officers will be carrying out proactive roadside checks across the county and will be using intelligence to target hot-spot areas for drink and drug driving.

Road Safe partners have produced a leaflet showing a crashed vehicle with the message Drinking and Driving? Drugs and Driving? Think you can handle it? Think again…

The leaflet will distributed by roads policing officers and safer neighbourhood teams across the county throughout the campaign.

In 2006, 47 people lost their lives on Suffolk's roads and 311 people received serious injuries as a result of road traffic collisions. Suffolk Constabulary's policy is to breathalyse all of those involved in road traffic collisions and this will be reinforced throughout the campaign.

Last year, officers breathalysed 9,059 motorists in Suffolk, 1,005 of which failed the test and faced a drink drive conviction and criminal record.

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