Reduction in drink driving figure

IN THE second week of this year’s festive drink/drugs drive campaign a 23-year-old Arbroath man was stopped in Dundee for speeding. He was also found to be carrying too many passengers and was one-and-a-half times the legal limit.

And a 20-year-old Angus woman who was stopped due to her manner of driving was found to be nearly three-and-a-half times the legal limit. She was one of two women out of a total of 14 drivers who were arrested for drink/drug driving offences.

Overall the numbers detected during the first two weeks of this year’s campaign is a reduction on last year’s campaign during which a total of 24 drivers were arrested for drink/drug driving. The public have again demonstrated their continued support by informing the police about individuals they suspect of drink/drug driving. Their calls have resulted in almost 30 per cent of the detections.

Over 50 per cent of the drivers detected have been under 25 years of age. One of those was involved in a road traffic collision and found to be nearly twice the legal limit. The oldest driver arrested was 81 years of age. That driver was detected as a result of information received from concerned citizens.

During the second week of the campaign, Tayside Police have continued to focus on other offences related to road safety.

In addition to this, a further 35 drivers have been reported for seat belt offences as well as 41 drivers for mobile ‘phone offences. With the very slight improvement in road conditions over 170 drivers have been detected speeding throughout the Tayside area. As a result of driving without either insurance or a driving licence a further nine drivers have had their vehicles seized.

Chief Inspector Sandy Bowman, head of road policing stated: “The continued support of the public is testament to the contempt with which they view individuals who are prepared to drink or take drugs then drive.

“Tayside Police might well have missed the opportunity to detect some of these drivers had it not been for the support of the community and for that we are extremely grateful. They are continuing to demonstrate their intolerance towards the reckless conduct of some individuals.

“The dangers of overloading a vehicle cannot be stressed enough. The braking, steering and handling of a vehicle are adversely affected when it is overloaded. Combined with alcohol, which will affect a driver’s reaction time, and the extremely difficult driving conditions that we are experiencing, this is a recipe for disaster.

“To be more than three times the legal limit and take the conscious decision to drive a car is incomprehensible. It demonstrates an utter disregard for other road users. I re-emphasise that we all have a part to play and I encourage the public to continue with the level of support they have provided so far.”

He continued: “The number and ages of the drivers who are being detected as a result of calls from members of the public confirms that there is no hiding place.

“If a driver is prepared to take the risk, in all probability they will be caught. With works parties in full swing, please remember that your ability to drive legally the next morning might still be in doubt. If there is the slightest chance you may be over the limit, leave the car at home - don’t risk it. Not only is your driving licence at stake you are risking the lives of others as well as yourself.”

If any member of the public wishes to report a drink/drug driver then please call Tayside Police on 033 111 2222 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.