Road safety charity IAM RoadSmart has urged police and Government to act now to reverse a serious upswing in the numbers of people killed and injured through drink-drive crashes in 2016.
The Department of Transport says provisional estimates for 2016 show that between 200 and 280 people were killed in accidents in Great Britain where at least one driver was over the drink-drive limit, with a central estimate of 240 deaths (reference 1). This is a statistically significant rise.
The figures released today by the DfT, say an estimated 9,050 people were killed or injured in 2016 in a crash involving a drunk driver and this is also a statistically significant rise from 8,470 in 2015, and is the highest number since 2012.
The total number of collisions and accidents where at least one driver was over the alcohol limit rose by six per cent to 6,080 in 2016. IAM RoadSmart was concerned enough by the static figures since 201 but this new upswing underlines that is the time to get into action with more proactive policies.
Neil Greig, IAM RoadSmart director of policy and research, said: “Today’s figures are hugely disappointing. We need more targeted policing and a lot more driver education regarding drinking and driving. Targeted policing in known areas would send a clear message to those still prepared to have a drink and drive.
“We suggest a two-pronged attack: firstly, continued education and a lower limit for the law abiding majority who might stray or who don’t yet understand the risk, and secondly, getting the police to be more up front about what targeted enforcement actually means as they seek to catch those selfish enough to ignore the current limit.”
IAM RoadSmart also reiterated its call for compulsory drink-drive re-education courses for all who are caught driving over the limit.