MORE than 500 people were caught at the wheel while under the influence of drink or drugs during a campaign run by Wales’ four police forces at Christmas.
The annual drink and drug driving campaign, which ran from 1 December 2021 to 1 January 2022, saw 299 arrests for drink-driving, with another 120 for drug-driving.
Almost 100 of those arrests – 85 drink-drive and 14 drug-drive – came following road traffic collisions.
Dyfed-Powys Police Superintendent Clark Jones-John: “The fact that drink or drugs were a factor in almost 100 collisions in Wales in just one month is very worrying and, frankly, unacceptable.
“We run these campaigns to try and raise awareness of the seriousness of driving under the influence, so it is disappointing that so many people have been caught and will lose their driving licence.
“For some it will be more serious and they will lose their employment.
“Police officers work 24 hours a day, seven days a week and anyone who is considering driving whilst under the influence should know that we will be out and about waiting for them.
“We will continue to crack down on those who take this unnecessary risk and bring them before the courts.”
Dyfed-Powys Police arrested 66 drink-drivers and 33 drug drivers; Gwent Police arrested 51 drink-drivers and 49 drug-drivers; North Wales Police arrested 115 drink-drivers and 72 drug drivers and South Wales Police arrested 67 drink-drivers and 48 drug-drivers.
ACC Mark Travis, form South Wales Police said: “More than 500 drivers had a Christmas and New Year to remember for all the wrong reasons – after being arrested by police across Wales for drink and drug driving.
“It is disappointing that people are still prepared to take the risk and get behind the wheel whilst under the influence.
“I don’t think people are quite grasping the full extent of the danger drug-driving poses. Those that do take the risks clearly don’t think about the families of those people who have died at the hands of a driver who is on high on drugs or drunk.
“Our officers are often the first ones on the scene of these types of collisions and some of the things they have seen are horrific. Nobody should ever have to witness that or have to suffer due to the irresponsible unlawful actions of another.”
Police take action against drink and drug-drivers every day of the year. Anybody who has concerns about someone they believe to be driving under the influence are asked to contact police on 101 (or 999 if they are posing an imminent danger) or alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.