Dorset's Drink-Drive Campaign Starts

Dorset Police are warning drivers not to risk their lives this festive season by drinking and driving.

Their annual drink and drug driving campaign runs from Saturday 1st December 2012 to Tuesday 1 January 2013.

During the Christmas campaign there will be increased traffic patrols, as well as road-side checks, and every driver who is involved in a collision during the period will be breath tested - irrespective of whether they are suspected of drink driving or not.

Inspector Matt Butler, from Dorset Police's Traffic Unit, said:

"Drink driving is a priority for Dorset Police throughout the year and is one of the fatal four.

"We are taking the opportunity at Christmas time to remind people that putting your life, and the lives of others, in danger for the sake of a drink is really not worth it - so don't take the risk, don't drink and drive.

"If you are going out for a drink over the festive period, then plan ahead to make sure you can get home safely without having to drive.

"Take simple steps such as booking a taxi, having a designated driver in your group of friends or arranging overnight accommodation.

"Research has shown that even one drink can impair the ability to drive, so my advice is simple - don't get behind the wheel after drinking any alcohol at all.

"People forget that they could still be over the limit the morning after a night of drinking alcohol.

"Officers working on the 'no excuse' project will also be focusing on drink and drug driving - as impaired driving is one of the 'fatal four' driving areas that the project's officers target."

The legal consequences of being caught drink driving include a minimum 12 month driving ban, a criminal record, up to six months in prison and a fine of up to £5,000.

The Force will also use information submitted by the public to target suspected offenders of drink and drug driving throughout the campaign.

Inspector Butler continued: "If a member of the public suspects someone is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, they should dial 999 immediately and report the details to the police so that we can intercept that vehicle."

The photo used with this article is of a car which was involved in a drink-drive crash in Hampshire. The driver was a 23-year-old woman who died when she collided with a van last year. She was four times over the limit. Her family have allowed the photo to be used as part of a campaign warning people not to drink and drive.