THE annual Christmas police blitz on drink driving gets under way next week.
It forms part of a drive by South Yorkshire Police to reduce irresponsible drinking over the Christmas and New Year period.
Officers have visited Sheffield University to publicise initiatives under way across the county in December to reduce drink driving, alcohol-related violent crime, domestic violence and underage drinking.
South Yorkshire Police has pledged to carry out drink-drive enforcement operations and test purchasing crackdowns, while extra officers will be on patrol.
Superintendent Shaun Morley said: “We are all for people enjoying themselves over Christmas and New Year and wish everyone a Merry Christmas.
“However, there are some people that take these celebrations to an extreme, putting extra pressure on public services.
“People’s safety is our priority and we are asking members of the public to help us by not putting themselves in any danger. We will be working with partners to help combat drink-related crime, drink driving and anti-social behaviour. We hope by putting preventative measures in place, disorder will be kept to the bare minimum.”
Roadside breath testing gets under way on Tuesday.
Chief Inspector Stuart Walne, head of roads policing said: “There are lots of alternatives to drink driving that do not put you and others at risk – for the price of a round of drinks you can get home safely in a taxi.
“I have seen families shattered by drink driving, There is a sense of injustice around lives lost like this.
“I have also dealt with people sent to prison for it.”
Drink driving in numbers:
Number of drivers tested in last year’s crackdown - 4,690
Percentage of collisions involving drink drivers - 10
Percentage of drivers who tested positive - 5.1
Percentage of drivers who were unable to provide a sample or tested positive - 10.6