Canterbury police disappointed by number of daytime drink drivers

  • 04/08/2018

Police say they're catching an alarming number of drivers over the excess breath alcohol limit in the daytime.

Canterbury police have spent the week targeting rural areas and say they've been disappointed with the results.

At around 4pm on the outskirts of Rakaia, police were looking for drivers who had been drinking. Some motorists were surprised to see the police checkpoint in the daylight.

Police say it doesn't matter what time of day, they're still seeing people getting behind the wheel after drinking.

At a checkpoint in Rangiora at 3pm on Wednesday, police caught two drivers with excess breath alcohol.

Acting Sgt Shane Keown of the Canterbury police Traffic and Alcohol Group says they are finding drink drivers all too often and it's unacceptable.

As the evening progressed and the team moved their checkpoint to Rolleston on the outskirts of Christchurch, the number of drivers showing readings of alcohol on their breath increased too. Three were caught over the limit in two hours.

"If you look at tonight's checkpoint - a couple of hundred metres of the road, and we can get several drink drivers in that small area," says Sgt Keown. "Considering the amount of roads in the city and across Canterbury, it just shows you what's out there."

It's not just in Canterbury where they're catching drivers out. Last week over two nights, Tasman police netted 16 drivers with excess breath alcohol - a result they're describing as alarming and disappointing.

Sgt Keown says people are failing to get the message.

"Everyone knows that drink driving kills people and yet they're still doing it, so we are going to do our best to get them off the road."

They'll be doing it all again on Saturday night, knowing it will be busy as a city celebrates or commiserates the Super Rugby final result.