Rise in drink-driving in county

By Roddy AshworthPOLICE have warned motorists they would remain vigilant in their pursuit of drink-drivers after the number of motorists failing breath tests rose.

By Roddy Ashworth

POLICE have warned motorists they would remain vigilant in their pursuit of drink-drivers after the number of motorists failing breath tests rose.

Essex Police released yesterday figures from its month-long anti-drink-drive campaign, which showed a higher proportion of motorists had tested positive than at the same time last August.

Officers carried out 2,114 tests last month and 85 people were arrested for driving while under the influence of alcohol - that meant 4% of motorists were over the legal drink-drive limit, compared with 3.5% in August 2002.


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Essex Police's road policing manager, Chief Inspector Tom Diment, praised officers for their concerted efforts, but remind motorists of their responsibilities.

“I'm still disappointed that members of the motoring public continue to blatantly break the law,” he said. “There were 85 drivers providing positive breath tests, which does not bode well for road safety.

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“It is extremely disconcerting that after publicity campaigns, with drivers being forewarned of the dangers of such behaviour, they still consciously choose to put themselves and other members of society at risk.

“I am grateful for the contribution and efforts of the officers in detecting and dealing with offending drivers. We will continue to be proactive in this area of enforcement and ensure that drivers who wish to take the chance are caught.”

During the campaign, Stanway traffic police - who cover the Colchester and Tendring areas - breathalysed 391 motorists, with seven providing a positive specimen.

Bocking traffic police, who cover the Braintree and Witham areas, stopped 342 motorists, seven of whom failed breath tests, and Chelmsford traffic police breathalysed 234 motorists, of whom 14 provided a positive specimen.

roddy.ashworth@eadt.co.uk

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