Chief constable Suzette Davenport, the National Police Chiefs’ Council (NPCC) lead on roads policing, is warning motorists that police will be on heightened alert to spot anyone driving under the influence of drink or drugs during the summer months.
During the 2014 summer drink drive campaign, 63,688 breath tests were administered, 4,108 (6.45%) of which were refused, failed or tested positive.
While fewer breath tests were administered to under-25s this time last year – 12,829 compared to 50,622 – the percentage failing (7.5%) was higher than for drivers aged over 25 years (5.57%).
The 2015 summer campaign will be the first national campaign that will include figures from the recently introduced drug-testing kits.
Chief constable Suzette Davenport said: “This summer will be the first campaign with new drug-testing kits in place to detect cannabis and cocaine as well as standard kits for alcohol testing, so we are better equipped than ever to detect and penalise those who take this very dangerous risk and, using intelligence received from the public and on likely areas for offending to occur, we will be ready for action to keep the road network safe, whether it be at night or the morning after.
“We are also particularly interested in getting our message out to younger drivers, who may be tempted to think that they remain able to stay in control. Our evidence shows they are more likely to take unnecessary risks.
“I know it is a perennial message that driving while impaired by drink or drugs is not worth the risk, but it is a perennial message for a reason – because it never is worth the risk to yourself, to others, to your future and that of those you could injure or kill.”