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Teen (16) among motorists caught drink driving over Christmas period

PSNI police drink driving

A 16-year-old was among the almost 300 people caught drink/drug driving on our roads over the Christmas period.

Outside of Belfast City, the two worst offending areas were Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon, and Newry, Mourne and Down.

There were 36 people in both areas arrested for getting behind the wheel while under the influence; second only to Belfast City which reported 45 arrests.

The oldest person detected was 74-years-old; the youngest was just 16 and not legally allowed to drive.

Almost four in every five (78%) of those detected were male.

Earlier today, the PSNI confirmed that almost 300 people were arrested for drink/drug drive offences during the Christmas campaign which ran from December 1, 2021, to January 1, 2022.

Initial figures show that 6,699 preliminary breath tests (PBTs) were conducted across Northern Ireland. This resulted in 295 arrests for drink/drug driving related offences, representing an increase of 5.4% compared with the same period last year (280).

Head of Road Policing Chief Inspector Graham Dodds said: “At the start of the campaign we told the public that we would be out across the road network focusing on those drivers who take the selfish risk of drink or drug driving. Almost 300 people did not heed that warning and now find themselves going into 2022 facing the consequences of their actions.

“The highest reading detected during the campaign was 124 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millimetres of breath – the legal limit being 35 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. Yet again our enforcement action detected a young person, aged 16, who shouldn’t have been driving on the road, let alone driving under the influence.

“Drink or drug driving is one of the main causes of people being killed or seriously injured on our roads. There is simply no excuse for this dangerous behaviour and we will be unrelenting in our determination to detect and arrest those drivers who shamefully put lives at risk.”

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