Almost 800 arrested for driving while intoxicated over Christmas period

There were 10 fatalities on Irish roads over the holiday period, compared to 16 in 2019

Almost 800 drivers were arrested for drink or drug-driving over the Christmas period, An Garda Síochána has revealed.

Some 790 people were arrested for driving while intoxicated over the Christmas and New Year road safety campaign, from December 4th to January 5th.

There were also 14,780 speeding detections over the same period, while 12,858 breath tests were carried out and 5,513 checkpoints. Gardaí said despite reduced traffic for certain periods over Christmas, the numbers detected for driving under the influence “remained high”.

During the same road campaign in 2019, there were 950 drivers arrested on suspicion of drink or drug-driving.

There were 10 fatalities on Irish roads over the Christmas period, compared to 16 in 2019, a 38 per cent reduction.

Last year, there were 148 deaths on Irish roads, compared to 140 in 2019, an overall increase of 6 per cent.

Gardaí said 1,096 fixed charge notices (FCNs) were issued for mobile phone usage and 314 for not wearing seatbelts throughout the campaign.

During National Slow Down Day on December 11th and 12th, gardaí and GoSafe checked 186,125 vehicles and detected 892 travelling in excess of the speed limit.

Paula Hilman, Assistant Commissioner for Roads Policing and Community Engagement Bureau said gardaí continue to appeal to all road users to remember the basics of road safety.

“The message is clear, never drive if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, or a combination of both,” she said.

“We also ask that drivers increase their compliance with speed limits in order to lower speed related collisions. This will reduce injuries on our roads and save lives.”