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As festive season swings into gear, Crimestoppers calls on people in Cumbria to speak up about drink & drug drivers

The charity Crimestoppers is urging people in Cumbria to help keep their county safe by speaking up about regular drink and drug drivers.

Last year (April 18-March 19) Crimestoppers received over 1,200 calls about drink and drug drivers in the UK and a large increase in information on those who drive whilst disqualified and without insurance.

Christmas and the New Year – with office parties and get-togethers with family and friends – often sees a spike in drivers who risk losing their licence because they are over the alcohol limit or under the influence of drugs whilst they are behind the wheel.

Many people drive after taking drugs feeling that they will not get caught, that they are in control or because of addiction. Driving under the influence of illegal drugs is increasing throughout the country, with many people not realising that drugs often remain in their system for a considerable amount of time.

Drug wipes and saliva testing kits are now commonly used to catch those who are unfit to drive after taking drugs. This has led to an increase in convictions.

Community intelligence given to our charity is key to keeping our roads safe and catching those who regularly drink and drug drive.

The campaign uses real-life examples taken from information the charity received last year including:

  • A mum drunk on the school run
  • A work colleague regularly driving home drunk going to the pub after work
  • A girl on a night out who takes recreational drugs and then drives her friends’ home
  • A person who takes prescribed methadone, but tops up with illegal drugs to get high

Cumbria is a rural county, so the charity has seen an increase in calls from people concerned that someone they know is risking the long drive home whilst being drunk or under the influence of drugs.

The charity Crimestoppers is now appealing to anyone with information to speak up and stay safe by telling us who is getting behind the wheel whilst over the limit.

Gary Murray, Regional Manager for the charity Crimestoppers, said: “We know that it can be difficult to speak up if the drink or drug driver is a family friend, a work colleague, or a neighbour. Getting behind the wheel whilst intoxicated is incredibly dangerous and jeopardises everyone’s safety on our roads.

“Drink and drug drivers put other people’s lives at risk and your information could help prevent a potentially damaging or fatal collision from happening.

“Our charity has been around for over 30 years and we’ve always kept our promise that everyone who calls us stays 100% anonymous. If you have information, please speak to our UK Contact Centre on 0800 555 111 or use our anonymous online form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

Your information to help protect the people and communities you care about from harm.”

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