Nine arrested in first week of festive clampdown

A 53-YEAR-OLD man was arrested for drink driving and had his vehicle seized after being reported by a member of the public.

The seizure came as a direct result of the extension to the provisions of the vehicle forfeiture scheme which also applies to a first time offender who is either three times or more over the legal drink drive limit, or a person who refuses to comply with any part of the procedure.

The man was one of nine drivers arrested and reported for drink/drug driving offences in Tayside during the first week of the national festive drink/drug driving campaign. All of the drivers who were arrested were men.

This arrest number represents an increase of one, when compared to the first week of the campaign last year when a total of eight drivers were arrested for drink/drug driving.

Tayside Police extended thanks to the public for their support for this year’s campaign. They have been instrumental in these detections with almost 45 per cent of the arrests coming as a direct result of information received from members of the community.

The majority of drivers detected were aged between 26 and 55 years of age. The youngest driver was 20 and the oldest 69. All will now face the consequences of their actions.

In addition to targeting drink/drug drivers, Tayside Police continued to focus on other offences relating to road safety. A total of 72 drivers have been reported for seat belt offences, 65 drivers were reported for mobile ‘phone offences and more than 120 drivers were detected for speeding.

Sixteen drivers were detected driving without either insurance, or a valid driving licence and had their vehicles seized.

Chief Inspector Sandy Bowman, head of road policing, said: “We asked for the continued support and assistance of the public and I am delighted to say that support has mirrored the commitment we have seen in previous years. Indeed, it has shown an increase compared to the corresponding week of last year’s campaign.

“It is very apparent that the vast majority of people in our communities will not tolerate the selfishness displayed by those who are prepared to drive under the influence of drink or drugs. I thank everyone who has helped us in our efforts.

“I also appeal to everyone to continue to show their intolerance to this type of criminal behaviour. Give us the information we can use in the detection of drink and drug drivers. We will arrest them and put them before the courts at the earliest opportunity.”

Chief Inspector Bowman continued: “To the would-be drink/drug driver I would say – ‘Don’t Risk It’. You will be caught and already, within the first few days of this campaign, we have seen a driver losing the use of his vehicle until, at the very least, the trial date.

“Potentially, that vehicle might be forfeited. Anyone else who flouts the law by partaking in this socially unacceptable practice can expect similar action when they are caught and appear in court. If your ability to drive safely is in any doubt leave the car at home!

“These consequences hit hard, but bear no comparison to the impact of drink/drug driving in the event of a collision. Lives can be changed irreparably, or even lost to loving families. Many people are affected, not just the driver who was so selfish that they got behind the wheel and drove while under the influence.”

Anyone who has any information about a drink/drug driver is asked to call Tayside Police on 0300 111 2222. If you believe it is an emergency call 999. Alternatively information can be passed anonymously via the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.