Police have commended the high number of drivers who showed a measure of responsibility in their drink drive attitudes at the weekend.
Officers from the Traffic Alcohol Group and Motorways Patrol Units were visible on Auckland’s South Western Motorway on Friday night and the Northern Motorway on Saturday night. They targeted alcohol impaired drivers.
Inspector Dave Walker Officer in Charge of TAG and the Auckland Motorways says compulsory breath testing checkpoints were set up at five specific motorways locations near the entrance to the on and off ramps .
“The results were encouraging,” he said.
“It is pleasing to see that while 193 drivers were found to have had some alcohol just 22 were detected with EBA.”
“A number of drivers who were stopped between 2200 – 2300 hours on Friday night returned positive results.”
“Many were still in their work clothes such as singlets and gumboots. This would indicate that they had been drinking since finishing work in the afternoon. They were only, at that time, finally returning to their homes.”
“On Saturday night a North Shore driver returned a positive result after being stopped. The driver who was under 20 years of age had three prior drink drive convictions.”
“There were a much lower number of drivers who were under 20 years of age who were found to be over the legal breath alcohol limit. [There were three only]”
“One drink driver on the road is always one too many. Previous results of similar police operations have said it all. Anyone with a carefree attitude to drink driving is placing other road users at enormous risk.”
“There were 7,007 vehicles stopped during the operation. Eight drivers had their licences suspended due to levels above 650 mg/l. Two of these exceeded 1000 mg/l.”
“Another four persons were arrested for Driving whilst disqualified, and for Warrant to Arrest. Staff from the Ministry of Justice Collections Unit worked alongside police on both nights.”
“A number of similar operations are being planned for the Motorways and other key locations throughout Auckland in the next few months.”
“It is essential we all play our part to stop an alcohol culture that is killing and maiming our families and loved ones. It all comes down to making the right choice,” Inspector Walker said.
Note: The drink drive operation at the weekend was the last for Inspector Dave Walker. The popular police personality is to retire as O/c TAG and Motorways on 7 July 2010.