Keeping the Roads Safe: Police Target Impaired Drivers

Keeping the Roads Safe: Police Target Impaired Drivers

As the holiday season approaches, West Yorkshire Police is launching its annual awareness campaign about the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The police aim to carry out extensive enforcement operations on the roads in December, reminding drivers that impaired driving can have fatal consequences.

Potential Effects of Impaired Driving
Causing death or serious injury to yourself, your passengers, and other road users are some of the many dangers. Additional consequences may include fines, prison sentences, loss of jobs and licenses.

Excuses Police Hear from Impaired Drivers
Police report that impaired drivers often make poor excuses when pulled over. Some argue “I only had a couple” or “I wasn’t driving very far.” But any amount of impairment seriously increases crash risk. Officers are experts at identifying signs of drunk or drugged driving and will continue working diligently to get impaired drivers off the roads.

How the Public Can Help
You can help by reporting anyone you regularly see driving while potentially impaired. An online form on the West Yorkshire Police website simplifies the reporting process. Or you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously online or at 0800 555 111. If a crime is in progress or lives are in danger, call 999 immediately.

Support for Struggling Drivers
The police are teaming up with West Yorkshire Liaison and Diversion to help vulnerable people get treatment for alcohol or drug problems, even if they get in trouble with the law.

How Employers Can Help

The office Christmas party is a time-honoured tradition – a chance to relax and celebrate the year’s accomplishments with coworkers before heading into the holidays. However, these celebrations also frequently involve alcohol, which can lead some partygoers to make unsafe decisions about driving afterward. As an employer or employee, you play an important role in encouraging responsible choices at the office party and beyond.

First, provide transportation options in your party promotions and invitations. Make it clear that taxi information will be readily available at the event for those who prefer not to drive. You might also choose a party venue that has relationships with local cab companies or ridesharing services to facilitate safe trips home.

Second, make sure everyone eats. Food absorbs alcohol and slow its effects. Have plenty of hearty appetisers, meals and snacks available throughout the event. Also be sure to provide and promote lots of non-alcoholic beverages so guests don’t feel pressure to drink excessively.

Third, stop serving alcohol at least an hour before the end of the party and switch to coffee, tea and soft drinks. This gives guests time to metabolise the alcohol in their systems before leaving. Discourage “chugging” behaviour close to the end as well.  Disposable breathalysers are useful if someone has been drinking and is considering driving. Best to be safe not sorry! Devices such as the AL6000 breathalyser or Al7000 breathalyser can stop people from driving when they should not be.

Fourth, clearly communicate that any employee appearing intoxicated should not drive home and assist them in finding alternate transportation. Appoint managers ahead of time to gently intervene if necessary.

Finally, consider covering the cost of taxis or rideshares home from the party. This eliminates any excuse for driving while impaired. Promote this perk heavily leading up to the event.

The holiday office party should be a chance to celebrate successes, not lament accidents and misfortunes. Following these tips will help everyone get home safely to enjoy the season. With some foresight and care for others, your company can avoid preventable tragedy.

Photo by West Yorkshire Police

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