Public supports campaign

MORE than 1,500 motorists were caught in Tayside Police’s annual festive crackdown this year, 43 for drink or drug driving

During the four-week campaign around 570 drivers were also reported for speeding, with an additional 678 being detected by the Tayside Safety Camera Partnership, 245 people were caught not wearing seatbelts and 168 drivers for using a mobile ‘phone while driving.

In addition, 52 cars were seized over the four-week campaign for being driven without a driving licence or insurance.

Assistant Chief Constable Angela Wilson praised the public for its support and said a “significant number” of drink or drug drivers were caught as a result of calls to the force.

She said: “I thank them for their efforts in making the roads of Tayside safer.

“To those who are still willing to take the gamble with their own lives and the lives of other road users, I say that we will do all in our power to bring you to justice and remove you from our roads.”

The start of this year’s campaign coincided with an extension to the provisions of the vehicle forfeiture scheme. It now includes first time offenders who were found to be three or more times the legal limit or who refused to provide specimens for testing.

Three vehicles were seized during the campaign by execution of warrants and two were forfeited.

Chief Inspector Sandy Bowman, head of road policing in Tayside, said: “The message that we have promoted during this campaign has been consistent. If you need to drive a vehicle, do not take drink or drugs.

“We have found that there are still too many drivers who are prepared to take a chance, risking the lives of others as well as themselves. That is unacceptable.

“However, we have been reassured by the level of support that we have received from local communities. With their help we have made certain that 43 people who were prepared to take that chance will be held to account for their actions.

“It is very clear to us that the vast majority of people living within our communities consider the behaviour of these individuals to be intolerable and abhorrent. I thank them for their continued assistance and support.

“This particular campaign has ended, but our efforts will continue throughout the year and I encourage the public to continue providing the same level of support.”

Anyone wishing to report a drink/drug driver can do so by calling Tayside Police on 0300 111 2222 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.