Police begin breathalyser blitz on Scotland’s roads

POLICE SCOTLAND has begun a fresh crackdown on driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs.

This Summer’s breathalyser blitz will run for three weeks, from June 26 (today) to July 16.

During last year’s two week campaign, 585 roadside breath screening tests were carried out, plus 152 drug tests, with the result that officers detected 295 ‘driving under the influence’ offences, a failure rate of 40%.

More generally, the number of motorists caught DUI has increased by a third in the past five years. The annual Recorded Crime in Scotland report published last week showed 7815 DUI offences in 2022/23 – compared with 5863 in 2017/2018.

Separate figures from Transport Scotland indicate that there are 20 deaths a year caused by drink driving.

Back in December 2014, the Scottish drink drive limit was lowered from 80mg of alcohol in 100ml of blood to 50mg, and a recent survey by breathalyser firm AlcoSense suggested that the majority of motorists have responded to that by reducing the amount of alcohol they drink, when they expect to be driving later that day or the following morning.

“But there’s still a persistent minority who flout the law and drive above the limit”, said AlcoSense MD Hunter Abbott.

“When you go out drinking this Summer, plan ahead for how you’ll get home – whether it’s walking, public transport, taxi or designated alcohol-free driver.

“Even a small amount of alcohol slows reaction time, inhibits judgement and reduces concentration – increasing the likelihood of an accident.”