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RECORD numbers of drink drivers are being caught by gardai who are expecting to ban up to 10,000 boozers from getting behind the wheel this year.

Already over 160 drivers a week are failing tough new drink-drive measures.

And a new breath test to be introduced in the coming weeks is set to trap thousands more.

The blitz which is part of a garda clampdown to curb spiralling road deaths has recorded a 10-year high in the number of motorists arrested for drink driving.

And an average of 40 more motorists a week are now being netted by traffic police intent on clearing the roads boozy drivers.

Garda head of traffic Chief Supt John O'Brien said the clampdown was such a success because of the increased number of checkpoints being mounted this summer:

"Drivers are not taking notice of the fact that we are now mounting drink driving checkpoints every night as part of Operation Lifesaver.

"It's not just a Christmas phenomenon. Since the introduction of Lifesaver we are in the business of seeking these drivers out."

A whopping 147 drink drivers were snared over the August bank holiday weekend when five people died in road accidents and 119 were injured.

The largest number were detained in road carnage blackspots of Louth and Meath where Operation Lifesaver has been focused.
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Author:Leslie, Neil
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Aug 7, 1998
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