Isle of Wight Police are reminding festive party-goers to nominate a designated driver (Des) before heading out on the town this New Year’s Eve.
The request comes as the Hampshire Constabulary’s Christmas drink-drive campaign nears its end, with more than 100 people arrested for drink-driving since December 1.
Officers have been posting messages on the constabulary’s Facebook and Twitter sites, encouraging people to get organised before they head out for the night.
Roads Policing Unit chief inspector, Andy Bottomley said: “People pulled over for drink-driving after a night out are often full of excuses but none of them are ever good enough.
“New Year’s Eve falls in the same month and on the same date every year so there’s no excuse not to plan ahead.
“If you can afford to go out and drink, you can afford to keep aside some money for a taxi home. Why not offer to buy one of your mate’s soft drinks all night, or pay for them to get into a club in exchange for that lift home?”
Tolerance to alcohol depends on weight, build, age, gender, stress levels and recent food consumption, meaning two people drinking the same amount can have very different reactions. It’s important to remember also that you don’t have to feel drunk to be a drink-driver.
The safest way to make sure you don’t drink drive is simply not to drink if you’re driving or leave the car keys at home if you’re out drinking.
Ch Insp Bottomley added: “If at the end of the night you find you’ve spent your cab fare, it’s still far better making that late night call home and hacking off your friends or family, then risking it at the wheel.
“Excuses when we’ve pulled you over just won’t be tolerated. You won’t get any sympathy and you won’t just get a slap on the wrist. You’ll have to abandon your car at the side of the road and spend a night in the cells.”
Hampshire Constabulary is asking members of the public across the two counties to text 80999 to report anyone they suspect of drink driving or being drug impaired behind the wheel.
The information will be received anonymously, and senders simply need to text the precise location where the driver was last seen, direction of travel if possible, and as many vehicle details as possible – most importantly the number plate.
The number is a text-only service, and will not take phone calls but anyone witnessing a drink drive offence in progress can call 999.
“With more drink-drive operations than ever before we’re bound to catch more offenders,” said Ch Insp Bottomley.
“However, it’s still frightening that in this day and age people are still foolish enough to drink and drive. You don’t have to do it so don’t.”
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