Christmas Drink Driving Campaign
10 December 2001

Caithness Community Web Site News Index


This year's Northern Constabulary Festive Safety Campaign is being launched in Barbazzas Night Club in Inverness and co-incides with a new poster campaign aimed at the 17-29 age group. 

Recent research carried out by the Scottish Road Safety Campaign shows that this age group contained approximately 10% of all driving licence holders but frighteningly account for over 30% of drink driving detections - a disproportionately high percentage.

Ten years ago the majority of people accepted that drink driving was anti-social but the message that drink driving is unacceptable and indeed downright dangerous currently does not appear to be getting across to a large percentage of young male drivers. In fact, drink driving in Scotland has increased by over 10% in the first six months of 2001.

This alarming increase in the numbers of motorists detected drink driving this year compared to previous years has promoted a renewed interest into why drink driving has become an acceptable past-time to some factions in society.  Recent research carried out by the Scottish Road Safety Campaign shows that a number of practical and social difficulties force some people to drink and
drive but the increased strength of some alcoholic drinks and a change in attitude in young drivers may have contributed to the sudden rise in drink driving.

The most worrying aspect of the research is that young male drivers are not concerned about causing a road death because they do not perceive that alcohol has had a significant negative effect on their driving ability.  This year police will again be encouraging members of the public to report drink drivers by using the freephone CRIMESTOPPERS hotline (0800 555 111).

Police throughout Scotland have already acted on the 402 phone calls made to this number this year by members of the public reporting drink drivers and have made 49 arrests as a direct result of the calls.  

So this years message is simply DON'T RISK IT!

The annual Festive Safety Campaign targets all road users and traffic offences however the focus of this years campaign is the young male driver.  Police will use high visibility patrols, intelligence and all available technology to detect offenders and a massive publicity campaign supporting the initiative will focus on males under 40. Radio commercials will be broadcast on radio
stations across the Force area using the wheel of misfortune concept. To enhance the publicity for the campaign, Northern Constabulary will also use their own "Christmas Star" commercial on all radio stations in the Force area.