Driver still over the limit the next day

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POLICE are reminding drivers that they can still be over the drink drive limit hours after drinking.

The warning follows a court case in which a Heathfield woman lost her licence having been found to be nearly twice over the limit the morning after an evening during which she had been drinking.

Anna Holdway, 23, of Cuckoo Drive, Heathfield, lost control of her vehicle and collided with a road sign but was unhurt. Miss Holdway was subsequently arrested and charged for being in excess of the drink drive limit.

She was banned from driving for 17 months, fined £150.

Sergeant Dan Pitcher of the Sussex Road Policing Unit said: “This incident reinforces the drink drive message, Miss Holdway had been drinking the night before. She woke up in the morning and considered herself fit to drive but this was clearly not the case. Alcohol stays in the body for some considerable time, and even if you feel fit to drive you must ask yourself the question, is it worth losing your driving licence for?”

More than 160 drivers were arrested in Sussex Police’s summer drink drive campaign and the force has warned offenders that they will be removed from the road.

During the national campaign, which took place throughout June, officers from across Sussex carried out both high visibility and plain vehicle operations to target drunk or drugged drivers.

Overall, 4,229 drivers were breath tested during the campaign and of these 161 were arrested. 308 of these tests were following crashes, resulting in the arrest of 30 people. Twelve arrests were made between 6am and 10am.

Chief Inspector Di Roskilly from Sussex Police’s Road Policing Unit said: “In just one month, 161 have been arrested and that is too many people who clearly blatantly disregard the law and are prepared to gamble with their lives and the lives of others. We will continue to focus our efforts on removing them from the roads of Sussex before they cause harm.

“Aside from the social and financial aspects of a drink driving charge - loss of job, a substantial fine, the stigma of a criminal conviction, imprisonment - drunken drivers take lives and ruin others with devastating consequences for themselves, their families and the friends and families of their victims.

“Our message to them is very simple: if you drink and drive, we will catch up with you and you need to hope that’s before you kill or maim. Don’t do it. I would like to thank the public for their support throughout this campaign. Information that has been provided has been invaluable in removing the risks from our roads.”

If you suspect someone of drink-driving you can report them via the Operation Crackdown website - www.operationcrackdown.org - or by calling 0845 60 70 999. Alternatively, you can call the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.