Christmas Drink & Drug Driving Campaign Begins

The annual campaign to target drink and drug drivers in Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire has begun in a bid to cut fatal and serious road traffic collisions and protect other road users.

In last years campaign in Stoke-on-Trent officers recorded 21 positive breath tests out of a total of the 442 they carried out. This was a slight improvement on 2007/08 which saw 452 tests carried out, and 24 proving positive. It is hoped that this years campaign will see a further reduction in positive tests.

Les Dyble, Staffordshire Police’s Traffic Management Officer, said: “Police officers will carry out random road-side stop-checks on vehicles and their drivers during the campaign. Any driver that an officer suspects has consumed alcohol or drugs or has committed a moving traffic offence will be required to provide a road-side breath test for analysis. Motorists involved in road traffic collisions are also breath-tested as a matter of routine."

“People going out for a drink with friends or family, or even staying at home and having a drink but driving the next morning, should think of the consequences of drink driving. You should always ensure you are fit to drive. The more alcohol you consume the longer it takes to clear your body. Remember, you can’t calculate your own alcohol level, but the police can.”

Driving while under the influence of drink or drugs is dangerous, against the law and has short and long term consequences:

  • when you are caught you will be breath tested and, if positive, arrested
  • you will be taken to a police station and if the station test is positive, or you fail or refuse to provide a blood or urine sample, you will be charged
  • you will attend court and if found guilty, be banned from driving for at least 12 months. You will have to pay a hefty fine, court costs and may be given a prison sentence.

What happens next?

  • losing your licence may mean losing your job and your standard of living
  • you will lose the respect of friends and family and you will have a criminal record
  • you may be banned from travelling to some countries. When you can drive again you will pay a lot more for insurance cover.

If someone is seriously injured or killed as a result of your involvement in a road traffic collision, you could be charged with a more serious offence. The consequences of this could mean:

  • your driving ban will be longer
  • your fine will be bigger
  • you are more likely to go to prison
  • great trauma for the victims and families of those killed or seriously injured which will stay with you and them for the rest of their lives

Mr Dyble added: “You already know the consequences; you’ve read the Highway Code and passed your driving test. You should know that the law applies to you."

“Remember, drinking and drug driving is anti social, against the law and wrecks lives and families. The family could be yours."

“Is drink or drug driving worth the risk of these consequences?”