Christmas crackdown on drink/drug-driving

The message is clear: If you have been drinking or taking drugs, don't get behind the wheel
The message is clear: If you have been drinking or taking drugs, don't get behind the wheel
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Drivers taking to the road under the influence of drugs as well as drink will be targeted in the Christmas drink/drug driving campaign due to be launched on Tuesday (December 1).

As part of Operation Dragonfly - Sussex and Surrey police forces’ year-round strategy to deal with drink and drug-drivers - road policing unit officers will be on dedicated patrols looking for offenders.

In previous campaigns, both forces have named all those charged with drink or drug-driving offences that were committed during the month-long crackdown.

The campaign is being run jointly by Sussex Police and Surrey Police alongside Sussex Safer Roads Partnership, Drive Smart in Surrey and the independent charity Crimestoppers.

A total of 133 people were charged with drink or drug-driving in Sussex during last Christmas’s campaign.

Teams will respond to tip-offs from members of the public who see someone they know has been drinking getting into a car to drive.

Stop checks will also be set up at locations across Sussex and Surrey, in particular at locations where there is intelligence that there has been a history of drink or drug-driving.

Officers will also tweet about people stopped on suspicion of drink or drug-driving offences throughout the month, giving brief details such as when and where the motorists were pulled over.

Chief Inspector Andy Gooch said, “Officers will be out looking for anyone who has got behind the wheel or got on a motorcycle after drinking or taking drugs.

“We will not tolerate drink or drug-driving and would urge anyone who thinks they know someone who is driving over the limit or driving after taking drugs, to contact us urgently so that we can act.”

In a survey conducted last year by Brake and Direct Line, three per cent of UK motorists - the equivalent of a million drivers across the country - admitted driving while on illegal drugs in the previous 12 months.

In the same survey 5.9 per cent of motorists admitted to getting behind the wheel when they thought they could be over the drink-drive limit - the equivalent of a further two million drink-drivers on the roads.

People in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with the details of people they suspect of drink or drug driving or visit www.operationcrackdown.co.uk

You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 (www.crimestoppers-uk.org)

To keep up to date with officers looking for drink or drug drivers, follow #opdragonfly on Twitter.

If you know someone is driving while over the limit or after taking drugs call 999.

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