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Saturday, 01 November 2014

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Cumbria police set for launch of Christmas drink-drive campaign

Police will target “morning after” drink drivers as the annual Christmas crackdown on over-the-limit motorists gets underway.

Officers in Cumbria say they will also focus on young male drivers, who have the worst track record for getting behind the wheel after downing too much alcohol the night before.

The force issued the warning ahead of the launch of its month-long winter campaign tomorrow, which will see police carry out stop-checks across the county.

Last December, 3,345 breath tests were carried out, with 96 people either failing or refusing a test. Thirty per cent of these, say officers, were motorists under the age 25.

The 2011 figures also showed men were more likely to drink-drive. Only 20 of the 96 who either failed or refused a test were women.

Sergeant Joanne Walker said: “We aim to catch anyone who drives when under the influence.

“The aim is to saves lives. Driving when under the influence of drink or drugs impairs your driving capability, causes accidents and can result in death.

“In the run-up to Christmas, people are planning their parties, going out with colleagues, friends and families and generally enjoying themselves. We just want people to plan how they are going to get home afterwards.”

On the “morning after” drink drivers, Sgt Walker said people should “take responsibility” – and make alternative arrangements if they knew they would be having a lot to drink.

Chris Broadbent, of the Cumbria Road Safety Partnership, an alliance of agencies aiming to cut deaths and crashes on the roads, said: “It is shocking that there are still people who will get behind the wheel of a car under the influence and put not only their own lives in danger, but the lives of others.”

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