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Younger drivers still need to take heed of drink-drive dangers

20 Jan 2015

Younger drivers remain proportionately more likely than their over-25 counterparts to fail a breath-test for driving under the influence, the UK’s national lead for roads policing has said.

Chief Constable Suzette Davenport was speaking as she released the national figures for the December 2014 anti-drink-and-drug-driving campaign, run by forces under the auspices of the Association of Chief Police Officers. 

This year, a more intelligence-led approach by officers resulted in a reduction in the number of tests this year, down to 133,996, but a higher failure rate by percentage, with 5885, or 4.39%, failing breath tests. 

Among these, 28,228 under-25s were tested, with a 6.33% failure rate, compared to over-25s, where 4042, or 3.94% failed. 

Chief Constable Davenport said: “The use of an intelligence-led approach by officers may give the impression of members of the public not taking seriously the consequences of driving under the influence, but I am confident that our messages on the topic are getting through. 

“Instead, targeted testing is helping officers to pick up on offending in a more efficient way. 

“Younger drivers, who are balancing the development of their skills and responsibilities as drivers with the natural enjoyments and explorations of their formative years as adults, are, unsurprisingly, more likely to take risks, but our message is very simple and very clear – you are breaking the law, you are risking your life and the lives of those around you and the consequences of doing so will plague you for the rest of your life. Do not drive under the influence – it is not worth the risk and you will be caught. 

“That message is not just for younger drivers, though – it is for all those who get behind the wheel. You do not have to stop enjoying yourself to take your responsibilities seriously, but please – if you drink, do not drive. 

“I will be looking very carefully at these figures and discussing them with colleagues around the police service, as well as with government and partner agencies so that, between us, we can ensure that we have the best possible regime of advice and enforcement needed to keep our roads safe from those who recklessly drive while intoxicated.” 

ENDS 

Notes to editors 

  1. CC Davenport’s availability for interview will be checked but cannot be guaranteed
  2. ACPO only issues national figures and does not provide a force-by-force breakdown
  3. At the time of publication, all forces had submitted their returns with the exception of City of London Police. As previous years indicated a low rate of testing within the Square Mile, which is to be expected given its size and population, particularly at nights and at weekends, we have published the figures without their contribution as it is unlikely to affect the general statistical trend.
  4. National figures are as follows:

 

 

2011

2012

2013

2014

Total breath tests administered NOT involving collisions

131588

149287

161496

110037

Total of those that were positive, refused or failed

5395

5161

4841

4106

% of total tested that were positive, failed or refused

4.1

3.46

3

3.73

 

 

 

 

 

Total breath tests administered FOLLOWING collisions

24981

26544

29974

23959

Total of those that were positive, refused or failed

1729

1962

1709

1779

% of total tested that were positive, failed or refused

6.92

7.39

5.70

7.43

 

 

 

 

 

Total number of collisions recorded

24586

29248

27551

27590

 

 

 

 

 

Total number of breath tests administered to UNDER 25s

36227

37402

37940

28228

Total of those that were positive, refused or failed

2074

1970

1675

1788

% of total tested that were positive, failed or refused

5.73

5.27

4.41

6.33

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Total number of breath tests administered to 25 YEARS AND OVER

118119

137617

139550

102555

Total of those that were positive, refused or failed

4783

4668

4482

4042

% of total tested that were positive, failed or refused

4.05

3.39

3.21

3.94

 

 

 

 

 

Total number of FIELD IMPAIRMENT TESTS conducted

540

360

513

335

Total of those that resulted in a Section 4 arrest

91

77

143

78

% of total tested that resulted in a Section 4 arrest

16.85

21.39

27.88

23.28

Total number of Sec 4 arrests NOT following a FIT test

818

799

690

1232

Total number of Sec 4 arrests following a collision

247

336

182

363

 

 

 

 

 

 TOTAL BREATH TESTS ADMINISTERED

156569

175831

191040

133996

 TOTAL OF THOSE THAT WERE POSITIVE, FAILED OR REFUSED

7124

7123

6550

5885

 % OF TOTAL TESTED THAT  WERE POSITIVE, FAILED OR REFUSED

4.55

4.05

3.42

4.39