Ten arrested on suspicion of drink-driving on Christmas Day

Ten arrested on suspicion of drink-driving on Christmas Day
File photo.

Ten people were arrested on Christmas Day on suspicion of drink-driving.

That is according to figures released by An Garda Síochána who also confirmed that a further 12 people were arrested between midnight and 9am on St Stephen's Day.

A number of the drivers stopped refused to give a breath sample when asked by Gardaí and will now automatically face a four-year driving ban.

Under the updated provisions of the Road Traffic (Amendment) Act 2018 are in effect since October 26.

These new provisions increased the penalty for drivers detected with a blood-alcohol concentration between 50mg and 80mg from a €200 fine and three penalty points to three months disqualification from driving (plus a €200 fine).

Last year, 8,920 drivers were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of an intoxicant, compared to 8,067 arrests in 2016 — an increase of 11%.

According to statistics from the Road Safety Authority, alcohol is a factor in 39% of all driver fatalities.

"Unfortunately, some drivers continue to cause such risk on our roads. We will continue to focus on intoxicated driving 24/7 to make the roads safer for all road users," said a Garda tweet.

The Minister for Transport Shane Ross said: "Sadly some drivers continue to take high risks with alcohol over Christmas.

"We will continue to introduce life-saving laws to deter reckless drivers from threatening the lives of others. I want to congratulate the Gardaí for their energetic efforts to enforce the rules over the holiday period."

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