Dozens arrested in Christmas drink-drive crackdown

Avon and Somerset police have already arrested about 170 motorists for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs as part of a crackdown this winter.

This year’s campaign – Operation Tonic – Earlier than usual, in line with the World Cup

Since its launch on November 21, 169 drivers have been arrested so far.

Last year’s raids ran through December and resulted in 246 arrests.

A spokesperson said: “One-third of Avon and Somerset accidents in 2021 were due to alcohol and/or drug driving.

“They include 12 deaths, all of whom have family, friends and loved ones whose lives are forever affected.

“Holding stop-checks and engagement events in communities to respond to reports from communities, act on information gathered, and account for the consequences of drinking/drug driving has been used in operations this year. It’s part of the tactics.

“A stop check not only gives the police an opportunity to talk to the driver, but it also provides an opportunity to act as a visible deterrent.

“This could also lead to the detection of other road-related violations, such as uninsured driving.”

Avon Police and Somerset Police Optonic Chief Inspector Andy Barry said:

“I also want people to be reminded that if they’re drinking outside at night, they may be over the limit in the morning and may not drive safely.”

Officers are also urging people to call 911 and provide information if they suspect or suspect someone is drinking and driving.

Police share the following tips:

• Do not drink alcohol or drive with drugs. Also, do not let acquaintances drink.

• Plan your travel arrangements in advance and arrange for a designated driver who does not drink or take drugs.

Be aware of the risks of getting behind the wheel the next morning

• Coffee does not remove alcohol or dull its effects

• If you are driving early the next day, it is safest not to drink at all.

• Drinking at home makes it difficult to judge countermeasures

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