Drink and drug drive campaign leads to ‘unprecedented number’ of arrests

SERP drink driving

Essex Police made more than 300 arrests during its annual month-long Christmas anti-drink and drug driving campaign.

The campaign, which ran throughout December, saw officers carry out a number of proactive, targeted operations and days of enforcement.

This was supplemented by work from local policing officers as well as those from the Special Constabulary, and intelligence and information from the public.

In total, 313 people were arrested – 140 on suspicion of drink driving, 139 on suspicion of drug driving, and 34 for failing to provide a specimen.

The number of arrests made during the 2018 festive campaign was more than double the 148 recorded a year earlier.

Adam Pipe, head of roads policing for Essex Police, said:

“This is an unprecedented number of arrests for a drink and drug driving campaign period, let alone any other month.

“To have, on average, 10 people a day arrested for drink or drug driving related offences is frightening enough but I actually think that’s only the tip of the iceberg.

“What is particularly scary is that it seems people are taking a chance because they think they can get away with it. These figures show they can’t.”

Essex Police says a particular concern has been the ‘big increase’ in the number of people arrested on suspicion of drug driving. 1,039 drug drive arrests were made in 2018, compared to 754 in 2017.

Mr Pipe added:

“I don’t think people are quite grasping the full extent of the danger drug driving poses.

“Our Serious Collision Investigation Unit, which investigates the most serious crashes, has seen a rise in the number of incidents where someone has been killed or seriously injured where drugs are a factor.

“And we also have evidence that drug driving is linked to more serious criminal activity.”

10 January 2019

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