Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 2 September 2014

Morning after drink drivers warned

A national Christmas drink-driving campaign will this year target 'well intentioned' morning after drivers, police say

A national Christmas drink-driving campaign will this year target "well intentioned" morning after drivers, police say.

Officers across the country will focus on stopping drivers who may not realise they are still over the limit the day after a festive celebration.

Deputy Chief Constable Suzette Davenport, the roads policing lead for The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), said: "There are some drivers who think they are obeying the law but are in fact breaking it by getting into their cars the morning after a night of drinking.

"People may be surprised to hear that last year between the hours of 6am and 11am more than 400 people failed breath tests (or refused to provide a specimen), which is more than those caught for the hour before or after midnight.

"Drivers need to be aware that regardless of the time of day they are caught, whether they are going to work or taking children to school, they will face the same penalties as someone who has chosen to drink heavily in a pub and driven at night."

ACPO is working with the Department for Transport's road safety initiative, Think!, during this year's campaign.

Think!, which will aim its message at young people, has released a hard-hitting television advert highlighting the consequences of drink driving.

Road Safety Minister Stephen Hammond said: "Drivers should be in no doubt that if they get behind the wheel after drinking this Christmas, they risk losing their licence as well as facing a fine and even a prison sentence.

"Christmas should be a time for a celebration not a night in the cells. That is why our TV advert reminds drivers of the consequences of a drink-drive conviction.

"Last year 280 people were killed in accidents where the driver was over the limit. Our message is clear: Do not let a selfish decision ruin your life or someone else's."

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