Sunday 16 June 2024
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Drink-drive warning to Notts motorists as police step up patrols during party season

Drivers who get behind the wheel after drinking alcohol are being warned they will be targeted as the force steps up its patrols.

Officers will be actively targeting those who drive after both drinking and taking drugs as party season and Christmas festivities begin.

Nottinghamshire Police has launched its month-long campaign this week to ensure drivers face justice for putting other people’s lives at risk by getting behind the wheel after either drinking or taking drugs.

The force is supporting the national campaign run by the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) which launched on 1 December.

Every driver involved in a road traffic collision or found to be committing a traffic offence can expect to not only be stopped but breathalysed by the police in an effort to crack down on drink and drug-drivers – and can expect to be hauled before the courts where they could face fines, driving bans and even prison sentences.

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The campaign is a reminder to road users that driving under the influence of drink and drugs is totally unacceptable and places other road users and the public at risk of being killed or seriously injured and hurt.

Inspector Clare Gibson, of Nottinghamshire Police, said: “We are actively on the hunt for drink and drug drivers on our roads over the Christmas period.

“This includes proactive patrols at relevant times as well as in the morning as those who drink the night before may still find themselves over the limit the next day.

“We are routinely carrying out operations to catch those driving whilst drunk and having taken drugs but we understand that during the festive period that people may be more tempted to jump into their car after indulging in Christmas festivities.

“Officers will not only be focussing on central areas of Nottingham but also rural areas and are aware of the key times and places to target.

“Our message is if you have taken drugs or had a drink do not drive as you are placing not only your own life in jeopardy but also other innocent people’s lives.”

If you are found to be driving or attempting to drive above the legal limit or unfit through drink run the risk of six months in prison, an unlimited fine, and a driving ban of at least one year.

Anyone who causes death while drink driving can face up to 14 years in prison.

During last year’s campaign (1 December 2020 to 1 January 2021) Nottinghamshire Police arrested 198 drink and drug-drivers during the month-long campaign.

Of these 105 related to drink-driving and 93 to drug-driving.

The force responded to 49 road traffic collisions of which 14 of these included drug-drivers and 35 drink-drivers.

The highest breath reading taken during the month-long campaign was 153 micrograms – which is more than four times the drink-drive limit.

The driver was hauled up in front of the courts after being involved in a minor road traffic collision and received a 16-week prison sentence suspended for one year along with being disqualified from driving for four years and four months.

Figures show this year the force has already dealt with an increase in fatalities on Nottinghamshire roads with 31 fatal collisions occurring so far this year compared to 20 in the previous year.

Inspector Gibson added: “We have seen a shocking increase in fatal and serious collisions this year.

“We have found that people driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs has directly contributed to innocent people losing their lives on our roads.

“It is always heart-breaking to have to tell families that their loved ones have died as a result of drink or drug-driving and I would implore anyone thinking about getting behind the wheel after drinking or taking drugs to think again and make alternative arrangements.”

The advice to those wanting to enjoy a drink over the festive period is to use a taxi company, nominate a designated driver or use the public transport on offer throughout Nottinghamshire.

Anyone who suspects that someone is driving while under the influence of drink or drugs is asked to try and discourage them from getting behind the wheel.

But if they won’t listen people are advised to call 101, or 999 if there is an immediate risk to life or property. You can also call CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111.

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