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1 June 2012, 11:05 | Updated: 1 June 2012, 16:27
Norfolk and Suffolk Police are looking to the public to play a key role in this summer’s drink drive campaign by reporting those flouting the law.
The annual month-long enforcement campaign begins on Friday 1st June which ties in with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations, the football European Championships kicking off on June 8th and the Olympics.
The Think! Norfolk* partnership initiative will run alongside the police enforcement campaign and will see advertising in local media and on buses. Concepts for the campaign focus on famous football sayings such as 'They think it's all over...it is now', football scores such as 'Vodkas necked 2 – Mates Killed 3' and highlight how even one alcoholic drink before driving can have disastrous consequences.
Iain Temperton, Chair of Think! Norfolk's publicity group, said: "As a group we put more emphasis into our anti-drink drive messages and look at what more we can do to educate motorists of the dangers of drink–driving. The 'Loser' branding offers us the opportunity to underline how much someone can lose if they break the law in this way."
Police will be carrying out roadside checks throughout the day and night, including first thing in the morning. Police are urging drivers to think twice before getting behind the wheel the morning after drinking – when alcohol can still be in their body.
Officers will also be breath-testing anyone who is stopped for a motoring offence and anyone involved in a crash in a bid to crack down on those who break the law. In Suffolk, 507 breath-tests were taken in the June 2011 campaign with 111 people testing positive. June 2010 saw 711 tests and 61 people testing positive.
Sgt Paul Ward of the Casualty Reduction Team said: “I want to remind people who go to pubs and other people’s houses for street parties, barbeques and football matches, that they must not feel pressured into drinking alcohol then getting behind the wheel of a car. Officers will be particularly active around relevant times. The safest and only sensible option for any driver would be to not drink any alcohol.
“We are also asking members of the public to tell us about people they know who are drink driving. They are a danger to themselves, to you, your family and others, and they should be stopped.”
According to Suffolk police, in 2011 14% of fatal crashes in Suffolk involved a drink driver.
Sgt Paul Ward added: “This campaign gives a stern warning to motorists this summer – drink drivers should not think they can get away with it. If you break the law and drive over the legal limit our officers will be waiting to catch you.”
Police warn that driving a vehicle when under the influence of drink or drugs will seriously impair the driver’s ability and can have serious consequences. The driver will potentially risk peoples’ lives and can receive a fine of up to £5000, a minimum 12 month driving ban and a criminal record.
Anyone who suspects someone they know of drink or drug driving is asked to report them immediately to the police on 101 or to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.