Motorists are being urged not to take the risk when getting behind the wheel this Christmas and New Year, with Police Scotland warning drink-drivers are more likely to be caught now than ever.
Patrols will be increased across the festive period with motorists warned that even being slightly over the limit is an offence and in the eyes of the law you are a drunk-driver and a criminal.
Councillor Marie McGurk, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Communities, Housing and Planning Policy Board, said: “During the festive season, there is an increase in nights out and it can be tempting to have just one drink or to take the car the next morning.
“However, it is not worth risking your own life and the lives of other road users as your ability to drive is impaired when under the influence.
“Don’t take the chance. Book a taxi to and from your night out and ensure you are safe this festive period.”
New research reveals Scots believe the top consequences of a drink-drive conviction are: losing their licence (81%); getting a criminal record (80%); or getting points on their licence (80%).
However, the very real consequences, such as a prison sentence (64%) or having their car confiscated (47%) are not as widely considered.
Neither are the personal consequences: such as losing their job (50%); being the cause of conflict in a relationship (45%); or the embarrassment or shame of getting caught (67%).
Minister for Community Safety, Ash Denham said: “The consequences of drink-driving can be life changing and unfortunately there is a persistent minority of drivers who continue to ignore the law.
“A drink-driving conviction can be devastating, with significant criminal, personal, social and employment consequences.
“I was disappointed to see that during last year’s Festive campaign 5672 drivers failed a breath test. To all those who persist in breaking the law remember, the best approach is none.”
The research also revealed people’s attitudes towards those with a drink-drive conviction change. Many respondents stated they would feel less likely to trust someone with a drink-driving conviction, as they see them as unreliable and view them as a criminal.
She added: “This campaign reinforces the fact that driving whilst under the influence of drink is unacceptable and brings misery and devastation to families and loved ones across our communities.
“My message is very clear; you can expect to be caught and when you are, you will face the full force of the law.
More than 20,000 drivers are stopped by the police in Scotland every month and Police Scotland’s enforcement campaign will see an even stronger focus on drink driving on Scotland’s roads from 1st December, so the chances of being caught are higher than ever.