Reminder from the police for the pre-Christmas party season: never drive unless you are sober
The police will launch an intensive traffic surveillance campaign for the peak pre-Christmas party weekends, 19–21 November and 26–28 November. The campaign will be based on the traffic control resources available for the police departments, and include large-scale nationwide breathalyser testing.
“If you drink a fair amount of alcohol in the evening, traces of it may still be present in your blood on the next morning and even the next day. Even if there is no alcohol in your blood, you may not be fit to drive due to fatigue. So don’t drive until you are fully sober,” says Chief Superintendent Heikki Ihalainen from the National Police Board.
Drunk driving has grave consequences
Ihalainen reminds everyone about the other consequences that drunk driving may have apart from a conviction and a driving ban.
“The police will file a child welfare notification when a suspected drunken driver with minor children is caught. The notification will be filed in any case, even if the under-age children are not in the car at the time of the incident. It is the duty of the police to file a child welfare notification,” Ihalainen says.
If the same person is caught drink driving several times, the motor vehicle can also be confiscated, and at the proposal of the public prosecutor, it can be declared forfeited to the state.
About 19,000 drunken drivers caught every year
Ihalainen says that every year, about 19,000 drivers driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs are caught. During the intensified pre-Christmas party traffic surveillance campaigns carried out by the police, some 250 drunken drivers have been caught.
“The numbers of police assignments related to drunk driving, and drunk driving offences, have traditionally been high at night on weekends in November and December. The highest number of accidents involving alcohol is also centred around this time of the year. So, there is good reason to point out again: if you drink, don’t drive, and if you drive, don’t drink,” Ihalainen says.