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Blanchardstown is worst for failing drink-drive tests

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Motorist stopped by garda taking a breath test; almost 700 motorists were arrested for drink or drug driving over Christmas

Motorist stopped by garda taking a breath test; almost 700 motorists were arrested for drink or drug driving over Christmas

Motorist stopped by garda taking a breath test; almost 700 motorists were arrested for drink or drug driving over Christmas

Blanchardstown had the highest detection rate for drink-driving in the capital over the last decade while Ballyfermot had the highest rate for driving under the influence of drugs, new figures show.

The statistics also reveal that one in 10 motorists in some counties has been caught drink-driving in the last ten years.

In the Dublin region a total of 650,453 cases of drink or drug-driving were detected between January 2004 and June this year.

Officers atBlanchardstown garda station recorded 3,013 drink-driving detections and 59 drug-driving detections, while those at Tallaght station recorded 2,547 drink-driving offences and 82 drug ones.

But the figure for drug-driving spiked in the Ballyfermot garda area, with 104 detections.

The Dublin garda area with the least number of drink-driving test fails was Clontarf, with 710 in ten years - while Donnybrook had the least number of drug-driving detections, at 20.

The figures were revealed as gardai mount mandatory checkpoints over Christmas. Officers will use new powers to test motorists suspected of driving under the influence of drugs.

Transport Minister Paschal Donohoe said that a "small minority" of motorists posed a "catastrophic risk" and that polydrug use - using drugs and alcohol - was on the rise.

"There's a very small minority who still don't realise the risk they pose," he said.

"Moving to mandatory intoxicate testing is the right thing to do because of the statistics that indicate the extent of drug use.

"Polydrug use, alcohol and a combination of drugs, is posing a risk, but an important consequence is emphasising yet again the risk of being caught that is out there for all people with any form of intoxicant in their system," he added.

The latest statistics show the number of drivers getting behind the wheel after drinking or taking illegal drugs is highest in predominantly rural counties.

Monaghan drivers showed the highest detection rate for drink driving, with 98.177 per 1,000 drivers showing up as over the drink limit.

limit

Cavan and Louth were next on the list of high offenders, while Roscommon had the least number with just over 32 per 1,000 drivers being caught over the limit.

The current drink driving limit is 50mg of alcohol per 100ml for blood, which falls to 20mg for learner and professional drivers.

Learners and professionals caught over the limit are hit with three penalty points, a €200 fine and a three-month driving ban. Other motorists caught with a blood alcohol reading between 50mgs and 80mgs are hit with three penalty points and a €200 fine.

If a driver accumulates 12 points in a three years they are disqualified for 12 months.

hnews@herald.ie


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