A month-long drink driving crackdown has been launched by police to target motorists who drive under the influence. 

Thames Valley Police and Hampshire Constabulary are working together on Operation Holly throughout December in a bid to detect and deter those who get behind the wheel after having too much to drink or taking drugs. 

During Operation Holly, police will be conducting operations across areas of the Thames Valley and if they suspect someone may be impaired by drugs, they can carry out a roadside drug test. 

Extra patrols will also be carried out based on intelligence about suspected offenders of drug and drink driving.

Members of the public are also being urged to report drink or drug drivers by calling 999 if the person is an immediate risk there and then, or call 101 with the details of the last seen location of the vehicle, make, colour and registration, if known. 

Road safety sergeant for Thames Valley Police, Chris Appleby said: “Drug and drink driving are both very serious offences and all drivers need to understand the gravity and consequences of their actions if they drink and drive. If you are not sure, then it is not worth the risk.

“Operation Holly is designed to be a deterrent to any motorist thinking about driving while impaired by the effects of drugs or alcohol. The importance of personal responsibility for your choices must be emphasised.

“Please think about the pain and misery you could inflict on innocent road users by a reckless decision to drive or ride after taking drugs or consuming alcohol.

“Drug drivers should realise we can now test on the roadside for certain drugs. Only a trace amount of an illegal drug in a person’s system could lose them their licence like drink driving. We do not need to prove you are impaired.”

Motorists who break the law can face a criminal conviction, a prison sentence and a driving ban.

As part of the campaign every driver involved in a crash will be asked to provide a specimen of breath in accordance with the Road Traffic Act 1988.

Sergeant Appleby, added: “I ask people to remember particularly that it is not possible specifically to say how much alcohol you can drink and stay below the limit. The way alcohol affects you varies depending on your personal characteristics.

“A conviction for drink/drug driving has the potential to ruin a person’s life and the incident itself the potential to cause serious injury or death on the roads - It’s not worth the risk.”