One in fifteen motorists are driving under the influence of drink or drugs and risking their lives on the roads according to figures published by the association of chief police officers. 

ACPO’s ‘not a drag, not a drop’  awareness campaign ran throughout June to highlight the dangers of drink and drugs driving. During this period, 63,688 on the spot tests took place across the UK, of which 4108 (6.5%) tests were failed, tested positive or refused. Under 25s made up 962 of the total figure.

While this is a numerical decrease on 2012’s figures (5170 failed tests), the percentage figure has improved by 1.33%; however, this rise is attributed to a change in practices whereby the number of test administered has fallen since the 2012 campaign.

“Our officers this summer used a very much more intelligence-led approach to testing. Forces focused on the dangers of driving the morning after a heavy night and targeting areas where risk was highest, particularly around venues broadcasting the world cup,” said chief constable Suzette Davenport

“Despite us constantly hammering home the anti-drink and drug driving message, it is not being heeded by enough people. This puts lives at risk, not only the driver’s and any passengers they may have but also other road users,” said Davenport.

As a result of these figures being published, road safety charity Brake is calling on the Government to reduce the legal drink-driving limit down to 20mg of alcohol per 100mg in the coming years, from the current limit of 80mg.

“It is frustrating to see too many drivers still selfishly risking lives by getting behind the wheel after drinking, even when the dangers and consequences are so well documented,” said Brake’s deputy chief executive Julie Townsend.