Drink Driving Could Increase During World Cup

11 June 2010, 06:00 | Updated: 11 June 2010, 06:27

Kent Police and Highways are working on campaigns to stop drink driving during the World Cup

They are starting a campaign to warn about the dangers of getting behind the wheel after having alcohol and say just one drink is too many.

Roads Policing Unit Inspector, Paul Sellwood, said: "Kent Police takes a zero tolerance approach to drink and drug driving and the summer is one of the busiest times of year for us. This is because people socialise more often and for longer during the warm, lighter evenings.

"Drivers prosecuted for drink driving will get a disqualification, criminal record, up to £5,000 fine or a possible prison sentence. But the consequences of a serious collision could be far worse such as the death of a loved one."

Click here to listen to us chatting to Insp Paul Sellwood

Steve Horton, Kent Highway Services' Road Safety Team Leader, said: "Most drink drive crashes happen in the summer months and with this years football tournament presenting many additional opportunities for social drinking, the temptation for drivers to drink could be greater.

"In support of the Kent Police activity, we are launching our education campaign on 11 June to coincide with the start of the tournament. We aim to remind drivers that penalties don't just come in football matches. If you're drinking, substitute the car for an alternative form of transport like a taxi or bus. Don't blow it this summer and fall foul of drinking and driving as it could cost you a penalty; a crash could cost you far more. Is one drink worth the risk?"

Click here to listen to the adverts starting on Heart on 11th June

As part of the campaign there will be posters around the county and beermats and whistles will be handed out before matches.

People dressed as referees will be out in these towns:

12th June Ashford  (England game)
18th June Maidstone  (England game)
23rd June Canterbury and Tonbridge (England game)
26th June Dartford and Gravesend
3rd July Margate and Ramsgate


Kent Highways Drink Drive Campaign


Councilor Phil Filmer from Medway has concerns about the impact that the World Cup may have on drink driving this summer. He says: "While we all wish to support our teams, follow their progress and celebrate their successes, drivers must remember that alcohol and drugs can still be in your body the next day."

Drink Driving Facts (from Kent Police):

  • 73 people are killed by drink and drug drivers every month on UK roads - that is 17 every week, or one every 10 hours
  • The proportion of drink related road deaths for the UK is one in six
  • Any amount of alcohol affects your ability to drive safely - drinking and driving do not mix
  • 250 people were arrested for drink driving in Kent during the same period last year, June 2009
  • Driving at the legal limit means you are between twice and five times more likely to have a collision
  • Alcohol slows reactions, leading to poor judgement of speed and distance and reducing field of vision. Alcohol also tends to make you feel over-confident and more likely to take risks when driving, which increases the danger to all road users
  • Most drink driving collisions happen between midnight Thursday and midnight Sunday
  • If you drive at twice the legal alcohol limit you are at least 30 times more likely to cause a road collision than a driver who hasn't been drinking, and 50 times more likely to be involved in a fatal collision
  • Causing death by dangerous driving when under the influence of drink or drugs can lead to up to 14 years imprisonment together with an unlimited fine, disqualification from driving for at least 2 years and a mandatory extended driving test
  • Driving or attempting to drive while above the legal limit or unfit through drink could lead to a 6 month prison sentence together with a fine of up to £5,000 and disqualification from driving for at least 12 months (3 years if convicted twice in 10 years)
  • After a drink drive conviction you could pay up to three times more for car insurance