MORE than 250 motorists are facing driving bans and large fines following a Cheshire police clampdown on drink or drug driving during June – with the largest number being caught in Warrington.
The operation saw officers from the force’s Roads Policing Unit carrying out additional checks on roads across the county in a bid to reduce the number of offenders and casualties.
In total 121 people were arrested for drink driving, while another 131 were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of illegal drugs. The figures compare to 141 arrests for drink driving and 73 arrests for drug driving in June 2016. All of those arrested, including 38 in Warrington, are now likely to face driving bans and large fines.
Superintendent Martin Cleworth, head of the Cheshire Police Task Force, said: “It’s disappointing to see that so many people still believe that it is acceptable to drive under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.
“The dangers of both drink and drug driving are well known – it affects your reaction time, making it harder for you to judge your speed, judge your distance between you and other vehicles and notice potential hazards. All of this means that you are more likely to be involved in a collision.
“All of those arrested as part of this operation will now have to face the consequences of their actions, which will have a significant impact on both their personal and professional lives.”
All roads policing officers in Cheshire are equipped with both alcohol testing kits and drugs wipes, which instantly detect whether a driver is under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.
Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire David Keane said: “It’s pleasing to see the work that officers are undertaking to make Cheshire’s roads safer by proactively tackling people who believe it’s acceptable to drive under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.
“The consequences of drink and drug driving can be devastating; they can cause a ripple effect that can have shattering ramifications for not only the driver of the vehicle, but innocent members of the public.
“I’m glad to see the positive stance being taken by our police service and I will work closely with the Chief Constable to ensure that this continues into the future.”
Superintendent Cleworth added: “Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is extremely dangerous and I cannot reiterate enough how much drivers are risking their own lives and the lives of others.
“While this operation has now concluded, our commitment to removing dangerous drivers from the streets of Cheshire continues, and we will use all of tools available to help us achieve our goal.
“I also want to urge people to help us by coming forward to report anyone they believe may be under the influence. Together we can help make the roads across the county safer for everyone.”
Breakdown of arrests by area: