Cumbria Constabulary kicks off the summer drink and drug drink campaign today with the message 'take turns in being a designated driver, look after friends and family and they will look after you.'
There are a number of events taking place this month, with the Jubilee celebrations, European Football and Olympic torch relay and the police want people to enjoy the festivities but travel to and from the events safely and responsibly.
Inspector Andrew Wilkinson, from the Roads Policing Unit, said “We want people to have a good time, but don’t take any chances with travelling. People can organise to get public transport or a taxi when going home, but if this is difficult then make sure you have a designated driver.
“Organise a designated driver with friends and family and take turns. You can look after each other and still enjoy the events.
“Not everyone who is caught under the influence of either drink or drugs has been out socialising but a large percentage may have been. People need to be aware of the length of time alcohol can impair your judgement, with some drivers being over the legal limit the morning after drinking the night before.”
The month of June 2011 recorded a total of 1,071 breath tests of which 79 proved positive and resulted in arrest - 20 arose from road collisions and 59 from positive police intervention.
During the June 2011 campaign, almost 75% of those arrested were arrested between the hours of 10.00pm–10.00am. However, 19 arrests were made between the hours of 6.00am and 10.00am, which is often referred to has the ‘morning after’.
This year officers from the Road’s Policing Unit also aim to use Field Impairment Tests more to detect those drivers who are under the influence of drugs. In 2011 there was an increase in the use of the test and of the six tests carried out, five people were arrested.
Inspector Wilkinson added, “Our aim is to utilise the field impairment test more, driving whilst under the influence of drugs impairs peoples driving and puts other people lives at risk.
“We are encouraging people to think about their night out, don’t just plan your outfit, plan how you will get home and make sure you have time to recover, don’t drive first thing in the morning.
"We will target those who choose to put their own lives of others in danger by driving under the influence of drink or drugs. Our aim is to educate people about the consequences of drink and drug driving and ask that the community continue to be vigilant against those who put lives in danger."