Drink and drug drivers targeted by police in South Yorkshire

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An annual summer crackdown on drink driving is underway across South Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

In South Yorkshire police officers are also on the look-out for drug drivers.

The month-long campaign, which will run throughout June, has been organised by the National Police Chiefs’ Council, formerly the Association of Chief Police Officers.

It is backed by road safety charity, Brake.

Deputy chief executive Julie Townsend said: “We believe drink driving is becoming more and more socially unacceptable in the UK, further aided by the lowering of the drink drive limit in Scotland at the end of last year.

“The new drug drive law introduced in March was also an important step in catching risky impaired drivers. However, there is a long way to go to stamp out this menace completely, as a selfish minority continue to get behind the wheel after drinking alcohol or taking drugs.

“We urge all drivers to ensure they are not part of that minority. Instead we can all be part of the solution by making sure we can get home safely from summer festivities, and looking out for friends and family and ensuring they stay sober behind the wheel.

“Even one small drink or small amounts of drugs make you a danger on the road, so the only safe policy is not to drink or take drugs at all if you’re driving - not a drop, not a drag.

“Feeling fine does not mean you’re safe to drive. That’s why Brake continues to campaign for a zero-tolerance drink drive limit, and greater priority to be given to roads policing, to make clear drink and drug driving won’t be tolerated.”

Chief Inspector Glen Suttenwood, head of roads policing for South Yorkshire Police, said: “Drinking and driving wrecks lives, most obviously the hundreds of victims who are killed or seriously injured each year on our roads.

“But it also changes the lives of the people who are selfish or inconsiderate enough to drive when they are not fit to do so.

“This summer we will not only be targeting those under the influence of alcohol but drugs as well after new legislation came into force earlier this year.

“My officers don’t want to attend road traffic collisions that could easily be avoided by individuals taking personal responsibility for their actions.

“Our message is simple. If you’re having a drink or if you’ve taken drugs, don’t take the risk of getting behind the wheel.”

In Derbyshire officers will be concentrating on drivers who get behind the wheel the morning after a night out.

Last year, 273 drivers were stopped in the annual campaign, with 44 testing positive, refusing to take the breath test or failing it.

To report a drink-driver contact the police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.