Drivers are being warned to expect heightened enforcement of alcohol and drug laws next week, as part of a week-long police crackdown.
The European-wide operation (9-15 Dec), which is being coordinated by TISPOL, aims to highlight the dangers of driving under the influence – including slower reactions and poor judgement of speed.
The European Traffic Police Network says it is ‘particularly aware’ of the increasing frequency of drug driving, especially among young drivers who – in many cases – appear unaware of the dangers and ‘trivialise’ their drug use.
TISPOL is reminding drivers that ‘no one else can force you to drive while under the influence of alcohol or drugs – it’s a choice you make’.
Meanwhile, passengers are being encouraged not to get into a car if they suspect the driver has been drinking alcohol or taking drugs.
Volker Orben, TISPOL president, said: “Driving after consuming any alcohol is dangerous. Driving while over the drink drive limit is against the law.
“Drivers will experience slower reactions, poor judgement of speed, reduced co-ordination and concentration with much lower levels of alcohol in their system.
“Taking a chance and driving while under the influence of alcohol all too often leads to a collision, often with grave consequences.”
Paolo Cestra, TISPOL honorary president, said: “If you have used recreational drugs, then do not drive.
“If you are taking medicine, whether prescribed or purchased over the counter, then read the notes of advice that go with it. If these tell you not to drive after taking the medicine, then do not drive. The advice is there for a reason, to keep you and others safe.
“If you are in any doubt about medicines and driving, then our advice is to consult a healthcare professional before you get behind the wheel.”