Stark figures show extent of festive drug and drink driving in Greater Manchester

MORE than 500 drink and drug drivers were arrested across Greater Manchester over the festive period, police have revealed.

From December 1 to New Year’s Day, Greater Manchester Police’s Safer Transport Team arrested 507 motorists for drink or drug driving offences across the 10 boroughs – which include Tameside and Oldham.

Some 43 were arrested on New Year’s Eve alone, as well as 19 on Christmas Eve and 13 on Christmas Day.

Tameside was among the areas where officers conducted random roadside checks throughout December as part of Operation Limit – a national campaign targeting high-risk drivers who ‘ignore the rules and put lives unnecessarily at risk’.

Officers weren’t just arresting motorists, they also handed out traffic offence reports for using mobile phones behind the wheel, not wearing a seatbelt and speeding.

Other drivers were also penalised for having no insurance and vehicle defects, which can have catastrophic effects in poor weather conditions.

A senior cop from GMP’s Road Policing Unit slammed the ‘unacceptable’ actions of drug and drink drivers and urged the public to report them.

“It is unacceptable that so many motorists found it acceptable to put the public at risk by driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs on the roads of Greater Manchester,” said Chief Inspector Michael Parker.

“Our enforcement tactics and zero-tolerance approach run 365 days a year and not just over Christmas, so if you know of a drink driver that is a loved one, please encourage them to not get in their vehicle whilst under the influence as it can have fatal consequences.

“Failing that, you can always report them anonymously via Crimestoppers and we will take robust action to ensure their actions are punished.”

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