Drop in Richmondshire motorists failing drug and drink driving tests over festive period

Police say just one driver was arrested in Richmondshire during their drink and drug driving enforcement campaign over Christmas and New Year.

Across the county, more than 100 motorists failed drink and drug driving tests.

However, just one of the arrests came in Richmondshire — down from three the previous year and six the year before that.

Defendants will appear in court throughout January and February, where they also face fines and a criminal record.

The traffic sergeant running the campaign for North Yorkshire Police says those convicted have “ruined their new year with an act of stupidity”.

This year’s campaign ran from 9 December to 1 January. It saw police conducting roadside checks across North Yorkshire and acting on intelligence about offenders that was submitted by the public.

Officers also took part in a public engagement event in Harrogate as part of North Yorkshire’s 95Alive partnership.

Significant stats from this year’s campaign are as follows:

• The arrests represent an increase on the same period last year when 82 were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.

• Twelve arrests took place on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day alone.

• Of the 100 arrested, 37 were suspected of drug driving with 34 of these being as a result of positive roadside drug screening test. This is an increase in the number of positive roadside drug tests resulting in an arrest.

• The average breath alcohol reading among those arrested was 66ug/100ml which is just under twice the legal limit and an increase from an average of 64ug/100ml during the same period in 2018.

• Three provided readings over 105ug/100ml – more than three times the legal limit.

• The highest reading was 113ug/100ml. It was provided by a Knottingley man in his 20s who was stopped in Elvington, York. The legal limit is 35ug/100ml.

• For the second year in a row Scarborough saw the most arrests (27) with Selby (21), York (20) and Harrogate (20) being the next busiest in terms of arrests. (Full breakdown below.)

• Those charged will appear before magistrates at court appointments during late January and February.

Traffic Sergeant Andy Morton, who led the campaign for North Yorkshire Police, said: “Every year, we warn people in the clearest possible terms that if they drive under the influence of drink or drugs they’ll be caught and charged.

“It’s disappointing that so many people didn’t follow our advice this year. They have now ruined their new year with an act of stupidity and they’re facing 2020 without a licence and with a criminal record.

“We have absolutely no sympathy for them – my team and I see the consequences of drink and drug driving first-hand, and they are utterly horrific.

“That’s why we will continue to target drink and drug drivers throughout the year, in every corner of North Yorkshire. People who do it simply don’t deserve to be on our roads.”

If you know someone who regularly drinks and drives, call North Yorkshire Police on 101. If you see an offence happening or about to happen, report it on 999 immediately.

Arrests by area:

  • Richmond 1
  • Harrogate 20
  • York 20
  • Selby 21
  • Scarborough 27
  • Ryedale 3
  • Hambleton 8
  • Craven 0