VIDEO: Derbyshire police launch Christmas crackdown on drink-drivers

Derbyshire police’s annual Christmas drink-drive crackdown begins on Monday.

The force is asking people to report drivers they know have climbed behind the wheel after having an alcohol drink over the festive period.

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Cash rewards are also being offered by Crimestoppers for anyone who gives information leading to the conviction of a drink-driver during the month-long campaign.

The action is part of a national campaign aimed at highlighting the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol, especially over the Christmas and new year period when many people attend social events.

During the campaign, officers will be carrying out increased road patrols and breath tests across Derbyshire.

Chief Inspector Tracy Lewis, head of roads policing in the county, said: “Many people head out to celebrate over Christmas and new year and have a drink, and the message we are giving is simple - if you do have a drink, don’t get behind the wheel.

“Alcohol can have a massive impact on driver awareness and reaction times, and the devastation drink-driving can cause is huge.

“We run this campaign every year and the aim is to keep our roads safe. We will be stopping cars and doing breath tests, and we will take action against anyone who is over the limit.

“If you have a drink and then get behind the wheel, you could lose your licence, end up in prison, or cause a tragic accident. It simply isn’t worth taking the risk.

“If you know someone who has had an alcohol drink and is about to drive off, call us on 999 so we can take immediate action and help keep our roads safe.”

During last year’s Christmas campaign, officers administered 391 breath tests and of those, 79 drivers (almost 20 per cent) gave a positive test, refused to take it, or failed to provide a sample.

In the summer, Derbyshire Constabulary produced a video highlighting the devastation drinking and driving can cause.

Chief Inspector Lewis added: “The video features accounts from officers from our roads policing unit, who have to visit families and tell them that a loved one has been killed in an alcohol-related collision.

“Whether their relative has caused the accident by drinking and driving, or has been killed by a drink-driver, the impact is devastating.

“The message of the video is relevant all year round and I’d urge people to watch it.”

If you see someone who has been drinking and is getting ready to drive, call Derbyshire police on 999 so officers can attend as quickly as possible.

Anyone with information on someone they suspect may drink and drive should call police on 101, or alternatively, call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111. To be eligible for the reward, people must report information directly to Crimestoppers and not the police and information must then lead to a conviction in court.