Drivers urged to plan ahead this Christmas as part of drink and drug driving campaign

More than 90 drivers have been arrested on suspicion of driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs in the past month.

Cumbria Constabulary is taking part in the national campaign to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads in the lead up to Christmas and the New Year – a time when people are attending social events and likely to be tempted to get behind the wheel whilst unfit.

Since 21 November, the Constabulary has so far made 95 arrests on suspicion of being over the limit for drink or drugs.

Whilst many of those arrested have been released whilst police continue with their investigations, some have already been charged.

This includes:

Andrew Smith, 49, of Mason Street in Workington who is accused of being more than twice over the limit for alcohol after being stopped in Workington on 25 November 2022. He has been charged with drink driving and bailed to appear at Workington Magistrates’ Court on Monday (12 December).

Christopher Gibben, 43, of High Church Wynd, Yarm, Teesside, is accused of drink driving after he was stopped on the A590 north of Ulverston on 9 December 2022. He is alleged to have been more than twice over the drink-drive limit. He has been charged with drink driving and bailed to appear at Barrow Magistrates’ Court on 29 December 2022.

Anita Palfi, 35, of Powerful Street, Walney, was also arrested on 9 December 2022 after being stopped in Barrow. She is alleged to have been more than twice the drink-drive limit. She has been charged with drink driving and is due to appear at Barrow Magistrates’ Court on 2 January 2023.

Chief Inspector Steve Hunter said: “Our officers are out on the roads proactively looking to stop drivers we suspect may be driving whilst over the limit for drink or drugs.

“A drink-drive or drug-drive conviction could easily result in the loss of your license and potentially the loss of your employment.

“We make no apologies for our actions. By stopping those who shouldn’t be on the road in the first place, we may be taking action which prevents a drunk or drug-driver from taking a life this Christmas.”

As well as taking proactive action on the county’s road, the Constabulary is also encouraging employers to communicate directly with their employees, in support of our campaign, to raise awareness of the dangers and the likelihood of being stopped by the police.

This has included a partnership with Crown Packaging of Botcherby, Carlisle, who are taking proactive steps within their business to promote road safety to their employees.

A spokesperson for Crown Packaging said: “At Crown Packaging the welfare of our employees is paramount. We adopt a safety-first approach. This is why we have partnered with Cumbria Police to inform our employees about the risks of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs during the summer and winter campaigns.

“We provide support and professional referral to employees that come forward proactively to help with substance issues and would urge other workplaces to do the same.”


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