Checkpoints set up across Lancashire as police launch annual Christmas drink/drug driving campaign
Police launched their annual Christmas drink/drug driving campaign in Lancashire this morning with a warning that anyone testing positive will face "the full force of the law."
For the next month daily checkpoints will be set up across the county to conduct roadside breath and drug tests with a zero tolerance policy.
Officers say they will also target individuals where intelligence suggests they may be driving under the influence.
The force insists it "will not tolerate anybody putting lives in danger." And it is urging people to report anyone they suspect of drink/drug driving.
“We know people will want to enjoy a drink over Christmas but we want to make it clear we will be taking a zero tolerance approach to drink or drug-driving," said CI Pat Worden of the Lancashire Police TacOps team.
"We will not hesitate to prosecute anybody who is found to be over the legal limit for alcohol or drugs."
The campaign, under the banner #MakeItHomeForChristmas, got underway during today's morning rush hour.
Police and Crime Commissioner Andrew Snowden said it would be strictly administered under his policy of "getting tough on criminals."
He explained the force's hard line saying: "If you put yourself and others at risk by driving under the influence of drink or drugs, officers will be out across Lancashire looking for you and determined to get you off our roads.
"Alongside the unacceptable danger to your life and others, you are also risking losing your driving licence, potentially your livelihood, having to go to court and potentially spending time behind bars.
“I am committed to getting tough on criminals and keeping people safe as I lead the fight against crime.”
CI Worden added: “We know that the majority of drivers follow the law and that it is only a small minority who choose to drink or drug-drive.
“However to those people we say this: driving while under the influence is both selfish and utterly reckless and the legal limit is there for a reason.
"No matter how well you believe you can drive under the influence, you are putting yourself and others in danger of serious harm or death and it is never, ever worth it.
“Likewise, if you know anyone that does drink or drug drive, then please pass the information to us and we will act on it. You may save a life or prevent someone being seriously injured.
"Over the next month we will be out and about on the roads and will be stopping motorists at checkpoints right across the county doing alcohol and drug screening tests. We will not hesitate to prosecute anybody who is found to be over the legal limit for alcohol or drugs.
“We know people will want to enjoy a drink over Christmas but we want to make it clear we will be taking a zero tolerance approach to drink or drug-driving.
"Please take a moment to consider the consequences of getting behind the wheel while under the influence, not least that you could kill or seriously injure yourself or someone else.
“The message is a simple one: say no to drink and drug-driving so we can all make it home safely for Christmas this year.”
If you suspect somebody is drink or drug-driving please tell the police on 101 or contact them online at doitonline.lancashire.police.uk.
Alternatively you can tell Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or at crimestoppers-uk.org.