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29 July 2013, 13:45
Less than 2% of people stopped and tested for drink-driving in Durham and Cleveland in June failed or refused to take the test.
Police say they are 'encouraged' by the results of their month-long drink and drug driving crackdown.
In June officers from the joint specialist operations unit, which covers both force areas carried out nearly 1,600 roadside breath tests on both major and minor roads.
This was in support of a national campaign led by ACPO (Association of Chief Police Officers).
In total, 1,590 breath tests were administered, either as a result of mass screenings at roadside checkpoints or as a result of drivers being tested after committing a driving offence or being involved in a collision.
Of these 26 tests (1.6%) were positive, refused or failed to provide.
Acting Inspector Jon Curtis from the specialist operations unit said:
"While it is still disappointing that anyone is prepared to get behind the wheel of their vehicle without being fit to do so, I am encouraged by the results.
There was a considerable amount of publicity for this campaign which was then reinforced through social media.
And in some locations we were able to deploy matrix signs at the side of the road to reinforce the message that alcohol, drugs and driving simply do not mix.
This is a year-round issue for us and we are committed to having the resources in place to deal with it."
Research prior to the campaign showed that over a four-year period on the roads in Durham and Cleveland (2008-2012) June had the second highest rate of drink-drive collisions for any month, with only October having a worse record.
Peak times for drink-drive accidents are midnight to 1am on weekends, and 8-9pm on weekdays.
And just over 75% take place within 5km or less of the driver's home.