THE number of motorists arrested for drink driving in Dorset this summer has risen by 30 per cent compared with a year ago.
A total of 52 motorists have been arrested in two weeks with police in the middle of a month-long campaign in which they are breath testing everybody involved in a crash.
That figure compares with 40 who were detained between June 1 and June 14 last year.
Chief inspector Matt Butler, head of Dorset Police’s traffic Unit, said as well as testing drivers at crash scenes they have increased traffic patrols.
He said: “It is disappointing to see that more motorists are risking their lives by drink driving this summer compared to last year.
He added: “I would like to remind drivers that drinking any amount of alcohol and then driving is dangerous. Don’t risk lives by drinking and driving.”
Of the 52 people arrested 21 were under the age of 30. Of these 21 people 18 were men.
The legal consequences of being caught drink driving include a minimum 12 month driving ban, a criminal record, up to six months in prison and a fine of up to £5,000.
Chief Inspector Butler added: “If you are going out drinking over the summer, take simple steps such as booking a taxi, having a designated driver in your group of friends or arranging overnight accommodation.”
Sergeant Nikki Burt, of the Eastern Traffic Department, based in Poole, said more drivers should consider the consequences.
She said: “If you haven’t been involved in a collision you don’t see the implications it can have on you and your family and the other people involved.
“If you seriously injure or kill another person you can’t undo that.”
The police will continue to use high visibility patrols as well as spot checks and will also be using unmarked cars.
They are appealing for anyone who suspects someone is going to drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs to dial 999 immediately and report the details to the police so that they can intercept that vehicle.
Also if anyone has any information about regular drink or drug drivers, they are being asked to contact Dorset Police in confidence on 101 to report them.
Alternatively they can call the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where mobile phone tariffs may apply.