Drink drive campaign launched

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Motorists are being reminded they have just one simple choice when it comes to alcohol- drink or drive- never both.

Sussex Police launched its summer drink or drive campaign on Saturday (June 1) and, in conjunction with Sussex Safer Roads Partnership (SSRP), will take to the streets of Sussex reminding motorists of the dangers of drinking and driving.

From now until the end of the month, police across the county will be stepping up their usual activities to crack down on people who think driving while under the influence is acceptable and take those over the limit off the roads. However it is not just busy town and city centres which will be targeted but also rural locations, where motorists often make a relatively short journey home from a country pub.

Chief Inspector Phil Nicholas from Sussex Police Road Policing Unit said: “These drink drive checks are part of routine business for us but during this month we will be holding more visible checks and working with SSRP to educate motorists. During the summer months people often get caught up in the excitement of the sunshine and enjoy an alcoholic drink outside, in a pub garden or on the beach, without thinking about the consequences if they then decide to drive. Drink driving will not be tolerated in Sussex, not only is it against the law but it is known to result in death or injury to either yourself or others. Our role is always to keep people safe on our roads.

“We are always looking for new ways to keep the public informed about what we are doing to keep the county’s roads safe and this year we will be holding a live week of events, including live-time tweeting and a question and answer session on the Sussex Police website. This will give the public a chance to ask us questions about the campaign and give a behind-the-scenes view of what happens during our checks in Sussex.”

“We tried live tweeting during our Christmas campaign and it was a great success. It is another innovative way of engaging with the public and was noticed by other roads policing teams from around the UK, some of whom joined in the ‘live’ tweeting from their own checks at the same time.”

During the same campaign last year 2,177 tests were carried out in June with 117 drivers arrested for being over the limit or refusing to provide a breath sample.

Chief Inspector Nicholas added: “If you are planning on having a drink or taking drugs, we ask that you make sure you know how you are getting home and don’t get behind the wheel while impaired. Remember that you may still be over the limit the morning after.”

Anyone with thinks a motorist is about to get behind the wheel and may be over the drink drive limit can make a report by text on 65999. Reports should contain as much information as possible - ideally the vehicle’s make/model/colour and number plate, geographical location, and date/time driver is expected to be on the road.

Reports can also be made via 999 if the activity is currently taking place or 101 if it is not an emergency.