The number of drivers and motorcyclists detected drink driving during the first two weeks of this year's winter drink driving campaign increased by more than 15%, it was revealed today.
One person was four-and-a-half times the legal limit. A total of 230 offenders were detected, 31 more than last year.
Chief inspector Diane Pennington said: "These early figures indicate that despite our warnings, there is still a minority of people who completely disregard the safety of themselves and others by continuing this shameful and incredibly dangerous practice.
"Drinking and driving kills, maims and wrecks families. Police will not tolerate people who insist on driving after having taken drugs or drink."
Six people were detected at four times the legal limit. The youngest was aged 16 years and the oldest 73.
The average age of people to fail the breath test is 36 years and 199 males and 31 females have been detected.
Ms Pennington added: "Words alone cannot describe the sights and sounds of the serious road traffic collisions which police officers and our colleagues in the emergency services attend. Bodies broken, lives shattered."
Already this year 108 people have been killed in collisions on roads across Northern Ireland, one more than the overall total for 2008.
Ms Pennington said: "I do not want officers knocking on doors at any time of the year, but especially over Christmas and the New Year, to tell families that a loved one has been killed on the roads."