Over 1000 drivers tested for drink and drugs as part of the Christmas campaign
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North Yorkshire Police have today released the results of the annual Christmas crackdown on drink and drug drivers.
Drink and drug driving is a year-round priority for the force but there is a particular focus on the issue across the Christmas period and summer months as it’s often a busier time for people socialising.
The latest campaign started on Thursday 01 December 2022 and ended on Sunday 01 January 2023.
In total officers have conducted 1,035 roadside tests in North Yorkshire across 32 days. Following the roadside tests 121 people have been arrested. There were 73 arrests for drink driving, 40 arrests for drug driving (one person was arrested for both drink and drug driving) and nine people were arrested for failing to provide. 18 of the arrests were following a road traffic collision.
The break down below shows where the arrests were made:
Out of the 121 arrests, 49 people have so far been charged. Seven of the 49 have been convicted with a further 42 due at court. The seven convictions have led to £3621 in fine costs and 126 months in disqualifications.
Throughout the month of December officers have patrolled the county in marked and unmarked vehicles to proactively intercept drink and drug drivers. Static checks have also taken place across the county.
The highest reading recorded was 141 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35 micrograms. Shortly after 2pm on Saturday 3 December 2022, a member of the public contacted the police to report a stationary vehicle on a blind bend at Kiplin near Catterick. On arrival officers carried out a breath test on the driver who provided a reading which was around four times over the legal alcohol limit. The driver, a 43-year-old woman from Richmondshire was arrested and taken into custody where she was breathalysed again. The woman was charged with driving a motor vehicle when over the alcohol limit.
Speaking about the results, Superintendent Emma Aldred, Head of Specialist Operations at North Yorkshire Police commented:
“Along with other emergency services we see far too often the devastating consequences that drink and drug driving causes.
“We often use the term ‘the ripple effect,’ as the mindless actions from one individual can lead to trauma and heartache for many more people.
“Although a vast majority of people were driving within the legal limits, 121 arrests is an alarming number, and it makes this set of results a difficult read. “This campaign has focused on asking people to call us with information about drink and drug drivers.
“I’m pleased to say we’ve received a significant amount of calls over the past month and often these calls have often resulted in arrests and most likely the prevention of further devastation.
“I would like to thank anyone who has responded to our campaign and called us with information.
“The Christmas campaign has ended for another year, but we will never stop targeting drink and drug drivers.
“We’re persistent in our approach all year round and we will never give up on the fight to make the roads in North Yorkshire a safer place for everyone.”
As well as working on enforcement measures, the campaign has also focused on education. Road safety officers have worked with colleagues at North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service to deliver drink and drug drive talks. The hard-hitting talk educate people about the risks and dangers that are associated with drink and drug driving.
The message from the York and North Yorkshire Road Safety partnership this year was “Save a life and call it in.” Members of the public were urged to call out any driver who was behind the wheel when under the influence of drink or drugs, by dialling 999. The below image shows the “Save a life and call it in” campaign on a bin waggon in Harrogate courtesy of the Harrogate Community Safety Partnership.
This campaign featured Emmerdale actor Mark Charnock who plays Marlon Dingle. To launch the campaign North Yorkshire Police worked with North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service to demonstrate a mock road traffic collision. Mark was cut out of a vehicle to show members of the public the reality of drink and drug driving.
The video which shows the mock road traffic collision can be found here