Fewer tests, more drink drive convictions in Wales

12.00 | 4 August 2015 |

In common with the combined figures for England, Wales and Northern Ireland, fewer breath tests were administered during the 2015 summer drink/drug drive campaign in Wales, but the percentage of positive tests increased slightly.

In total, during the 2015 campaign police officers carried out 12,920 breath tests across Wales, 353 of which tested positive (2.73%). In the 2014 campaign, a total of 15,485 breath tests were administered, of which 358 (2.3%) tested positive. 52 arrests were also made this year under the new drug drive offence.

North Wales Police administered 5,235 breath tests with 85 being positive. The force also carried out 20 ‘DrugWipe’ tests, using the new kit, half of which resulted in an arrest

Gwent Police carried out 297 breath tests with 17 testing positive, and 19 people were arrested following a Section 5a drug test.

Dyfed Powys Police administered 4,951 breath tests of which 127 were positive, and three people were arrested following a Section 5a drug test.

In the South Wales Police area 2,437 tests were conducted with 124 testing positive, and 20 people were arrested following a Section 5a drug swipe test.

Chief inspector Darren Wareing, from North Wales Police, said: “We are carrying out intelligence-led operations targeting people who frequently drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs throughout the year. As a consequence of these operations we are seeing a significant fall in collisions involving drink and/or drugs.

“However, there is still a perception that drivers, particularly in rural areas, believe they have less chance of getting caught drunk or under the influence of drugs behind the wheel. People should be aware that we have detailed tactical plans that include targeting specific areas following analysis of intelligence and information given to us by concerned members of the community.

“I would also like to personally thank each individual who contacted us during the campaign to give us the information we needed. The sole reason we carry out these campaigns is to help keep people safe on the roads, and by letting us know of anybody driving under the influence of drink or drugs they are possibly saving a life.”

Susan Storch, chair of Road Safety Wales, said: "It is disappointing that over 400 drivers throughout Wales chose to risk their own lives, and the lives of others during the campaign.

“Those that chose to break the law and endanger themselves and other road users arrogantly were in the minority, and we thank the public that showed support for the campaign and were happy to co-operate.”



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