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Annual campaign brings similar results

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The annual winter anti-drink and drugs campaign in Hampshire has resulted in a similar number of arrests

HAMPSHIRE Constabulary's winter drink/drugs campaign this year (2010/11) has resulted in a similar number of arrests, compared to the same period last year (2009/10), despite hundreds fewer drivers being stopped during this year's campaign.

Officers stopped 3,984 drivers during the campaign, which ran from December 1, 2010 to January 3, 2011 - with 247 of those providing positive breath tests, or refusing to take the test

By comparison, 4,747 drivers were stopped during the 2009/10 winter campaign, with 309 of those providing positive breath tests or refusing to take the test.

A total of 224 people were arrested in this year's campaign, with 158 of those charged with an offence, compared with a total of 228 people arrested last year, 168 of whom were charged.

Insp Jon Snook said officers have been carrying out special patrols to target hot spot areas:

“However, disappointingly, the message doesn't seem to have hit home with all drivers. Despite the campaign coming to an end, officers will continue to patrol the roads as normal and anyone caught drink or drug-driving will face tough penalties.

A total of 50 Field Impairment Tests (FIT) were carried out on drivers suspected of driving under the influence of drugs during this year's campaign, compared with 60 last year.

Insp Snook added: “While we are a little disappointed that the number of people driving under the influence has not been reduced this year, we continue to reinforce the message that driving under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs puts you and other road users in danger.”

“Alcohol, for example, makes it difficult to judge distances, while cannabis can slow your reaction times and cocaine makes you more likely to take risks.

“Combine any of these with driving and the results can be lethal.”

This is a revised version of this story, after incorrect figures were initially supplied by Hampshire Constabulary.

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