Police are to carry out extra checks on motorists this summer to make sure they are not driving while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. According to the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), thousands of additional drink-drivers will be stopped and tested for signs of intoxication throughout June.
Chief constable Suzette Davenport, lead for roads policing at ACPO, commented: “Police take this offence very seriously and experience shows us that courts take a very dim view of anyone who is caught.
“It is appalling that in 2013, we still have to remind people not to drink or take drugs and drive.”
Ms Davenport warned that if a motorist is found to have caused a death while driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they could be put in prison for up to 14 years.
She insisted that these fatalities could be avoided if drivers either make alternative arrangements to get home from events this summer, or simply choose not to drink or take drugs and drive.
The extra checks on motorists coincide with the launch of a new £740,000 drink-drive campaign by the Department for Transport.
Pub posters, an online film and radio advertisements have been created to increase awareness of the consequences of being convicted of the offence.
Road safety minister Stephen Hammond stated that if drink-drivers are found guilty, motorists are likely to be banned from driving and be hit with a hefty fine, as well as get a criminal record and potentially be put in jail.
A drink-driving conviction could also have long-term financial implications for motorists, as they may be required to pay much more for car insurance in the future.
“Make sure you do not drink and drive – it could have devastating consequences for you and others,” Mr Hammond insisted.
He added that many people across the UK rely heavily on their cars, which means being banned from taking to the road because of a drink-driving conviction could create a “massive hole” in their lives.