Disappointing festive drink & drug figures in Scotland

Monday, January 20, 2020 - 08:27
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Approximately one in 15 drivers stopped by Police Scotland over the festive period tested positive for alcohol or drugs.

The force’s festive drink and drug drive campaign ran between 1 December and 2 January and saw officers breathalyse 8,687 drivers at the roadside.

Drink & Drug

In total, 580 people were arrested for drink (395) or drug (185) driving offences – equating to just under 7%.

Of those caught drink driving, 29 drivers failed a breath test the morning after drinking.

The number of arrests is similar to the level recorded during the 2018/19 campaign – when 565 offences were detected from 8,632 tests.

Police Scotland describes the latest figures as ‘extremely disappointing’.

Chief supt Louise Blakelock, Police Scotland’s head of road policing, said: “The dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs are well known yet some drivers are still willing to take the risk.

“We will continue to take action against those who selfishly put others at risk by driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Our message is simple: the best approach is none.”

Humza Yousaf, Scotland’s justice secretary, said: “It is staggering that some people are still reckless and selfish enough to take drugs or alcohol before getting behind the wheel of a car – putting themselves as well as other road users at risk.

“While responsibility for obeying the law rests solely with individual motorists, I commend those who took active steps to convince friends, relatives or colleagues not to drive with drink or drugs in their system – or who, perhaps in challenging circumstances, reported individuals they suspected of drink or drug driving to the police.

“They can take some comfort in knowing that they stood up for the law and for common sense and perhaps even prevented a tragedy from happening.

“I cannot stress that the laws are in place to keep everyone safe on Scotland’s roads and police officers will continue to tackle those they suspect to be committing driving offences.”


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