Belfast Telegraph

Nearly 1,500 people arrested for drink or drug driving in Northern Ireland this year

1,426 people in Northern Ireland have been arrested for drink or drug drive so far this year.
1,426 people in Northern Ireland have been arrested for drink or drug drive so far this year.

Almost 1,500 people have been arrested so far this year for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in Northern Ireland, police have said.

The PSNI announced the figures as they launched their summer anti-driving campaign.

Chief Inspector Diane Pennington said so far this year police have arrested 1,426 people for drink or drug driving.

"While road safety remains a daily priority, over the coming fortnight, all police officers across Northern Ireland and the UK will be focusing on preventing and detecting drink driving," she said.

"Already this year, despite our repeated warnings, we have arrested 1,426 people for drink/drug driving.

"Each of these people will soon discover to their cost, everyday tasks they'd taken for granted may become much more difficult as a result of losing their driving licence."

Chief Inspector Pennington warned anyone caught driving under the influence can expect to be prosecuted and lose their driving licence.

"If you cause a collision in which someone is killed or seriously injured, you can expect a custodial sentence," she said.

"Any driver or motorcyclist stopped by police, whether for speeding, using a mobile phone, or committing any moving traffic offence can expect to be breathalysed. So too can anyone involved in a collision or who we suspect may have consumed alcohol or taken drugs.

"We will also be making use of legislation first introduced in November 2016, which gives us powers to carry out breath tests at authorised vehicle checkpoints at key times of the day and night.

"We all share the roads, so we all share the responsibility for road safety. Slow down. Never drive after drinking or taking drugs. Pay greater attention to your surroundings, and always wear your seatbelt. If everyone follows this advice, then together we can save lives on our roads."

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