About 500 drivers have been tested for drink or drug driving in west Cumbria in the last two weeks as police aim to keep the roads safe over Christmas.
Officers have been out carrying out stop checks and testing drivers suspected of being over-the-limit as part of Cumbria Constabulary’s move to target these offences over the festive season.
In the west of the county, there have been 18 people arrested over this time.
Fourteen of these were for suspected drink-driving, three for alleged driving under the influence of drugs and one for allegedly not providing a breath test.
Superintendent Carl Patrick said: “I want the public to know that we take this offending extremely seriously – and will do all we can to keep the roads safe.
“Those tempted to drink drive or drive under the influence of drugs should also take notice of the number of drivers we are testing.
“If you think you can risk driving after a few drinks, then think again.
“Our officers are out there and you stand a good chance of being caught.”
As well as drink driving, officers can test for drug driving.
A roadside drugs wipe tests a person’s saliva to find if they have taken drugs before getting behind the wheel.
Supt Patrick added: “We are better prepared than ever to catch those drivers who selfishly take these risks, putting themselves and other road users in danger.”
Cumbria’s Police and Crime Commissioner Peter McCall said: “Drink and drug driving is a senseless and selfish act and anyone caught doing so will be prosecuted.
“This time of year is supposed to be a happy, safe time for families, friends and colleagues to get together, celebrate and enjoy their time together.
“Drink and drug driving puts this at risk and could make this time of year a really negative time.
“Please don’t get behind the wheel intoxicated; always have a sober driver and get home safely this Christmas.”
If you suspect somebody may be a drink or drug driver then call police on 101, report online at www.cumbria.police.uk or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
If you believe somebody is currently driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs and you believe them to be a danger, dial 999.