SUSSEX POLICE LAUNCH CHRISTMAS DRINK-DRIVE CAMPAIGN
November 15 2011.
From now until the beginning of January, police across the county will be stepping up their usual activities to crack down on people who think that impaired driving is acceptable. Chief Inspector Di Roskilly of Sussex Police Road Policing Unit said: "Like many other festive seasons, we are concerned about the number of people who still choose to mix drinking or drug consumption with driving.
"It is the responsibility of the driver to make sure they are not impaired when they get behind the wheel, but this year we would also like to encourage other people to help us keep people safe and report those who still insist on driving.
"Mobile phone users can now report people they believe are drink or drug driving, or those who are about to drink or drug drive, by texting 65999. Some people may find this easier, especially as it can be done discreetly.
"Also this year we will be making applications to the courts for vehicles of persistent drink or drug drivers to be forfeited, along with our usual covert and overt operations and educational events alongside partners."
During the same campaign last year 6501 tests were carried out in a seven week period with 176 drivers arrested for being over the limit or refusing to provide a breath sample.
CI Roskilly said: "Drink and/or drug 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 to keep people safe on our roads.
"If you are planning on having a drink or taking drugs this festive season we ask that you ensure 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."
Phil Henty, Operations Manager for the Sussex Safer Roads Partnership , said: "Anti-drink and drug driving messages will be promoted throughout communities across Sussex once again this Christmas. However, we also remind motorists to stop and think before they get into their vehicles the night after a party.
"Alcohol can take time to get out of a motorist's system, so if the celebrations lasted into the early hours, drivers should be aware that they can still be over the limit even after a few hours' sleep.
"Driving while hung-over can also be dangerous. Although levels of alcohol may have dropped below the legal limits, tiredness, headaches, dehydration, low sugar levels or the general after effects of drinking can put drivers at risk behind the wheel."
The Sussex campaign coincides with the national Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) anti-drink drive campaign and the Tispol European campaign.
If you would like to make a report to Sussex Police 999 if the activity is currently taking place or 101 if it's not an emergency. You can also make reports through the Operation Crackdown website www.operationcrackdown.org or text 65999.
Mobile phone users who text 65999 to make a report are asked to include as much information as possible. Details about where the driver is leaving from, where they are going, the make of vehicle, a registration number and their name will all assist police to trace the driver.