POLICE and other services are looking to warn of the dangers of drink and drug driving and will take steps to ensure those who do take the risks are caught and taken off the roads.

North Yorkshire Police, along with North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (NYFRS) and other partner agencies in the York and North Yorkshire Road Safety Partnership, have now launched the Christmas Drink / Drug Drive campaign.

As part of the campaign, traffic officers across the county will be conducting around the clock patrols and breath testing in an attempt to limit the number of drink or drug driving offences over the festive period.

Sergeant Andy Morton, of North Yorkshire Police, said: “A lot of people think police are just interested in catching and arresting as many people as possible for drink or drug driving over the festive period. And whilst this is true to an extent, the main priority for us is to keep people alive. That’s why we do the job we do, and why we do these extra patrols.

“We are trying to prevent people from dying on our roads. We want to catch people who take serious risks by breaking the law in this way, before they kill themselves or someone else.

“Drink and drug driving kills. It’s that simple. We want you to live and be at home with your loved ones this Christmas.”

Every year, there are on average around 1400 people arrested across North Yorkshire for drink or drug driving - and police say that more people tend to drink and drug drive over the festive period.

Tony Peel, group manager for the North Yorkshire fire service, said that this partnership campaign is "key" to helping ensure the service drive home the message that drink and drug driving kills.

Mr Peel said: "The York and North Yorkshire Road Safety Partnership will work together throughout December to educate and engage as many people as possible with an aim of making our roads safer for all users.

“None of us want people to die on our roads. So, my message is don’t take that risk and make sure you’re safe this festive season."

Councillor Andy D’Agorne, deputy leader and executive member for transport, at City of York Council said the campaign has made a real positive difference in reducing drink and drug drivers, but warns people cannot be too complacent.

"As we approach the festive season, we’re encouraging drivers to think before they get behind the wheel and are reminding e-scooter riders that the laws and risks apply to them too", Cllr D'Agorne said.

The campaign was launched on Wednesday (December 1) and will remain in place until January 1 2022.