Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Penalty warning in Manx Christmas drink-drive campaign

Isle of Man drivers are being warned of heavy penalties as part of an annual clampdown on Christmas drink-driving.

Police said people found driving while over-the-limit can expect a 12 month ban and a fine of up to £5,000.

They also face having a criminal record, which would mean more expensive insurance once they have retaken their driving test at the end of the ban.

Insp Iain McMillan said: "Christmas euphoria can be quickly dashed when you are the reason for a fatal accident."

Thirteen arrests

He added: "Our immediate contact with drink drivers is when they are worse for drink so their sense of responsibility is distorted - the reality doesn't hit home until they are standing in the court room and it is usually at this point when the full magnitude of their actions become apparent."

The island's drink-drive campaign is a joint initiative between the department of infrastructure and the police.

Mr McMillan said: "The statistics indicate that drink-drive numbers on the island have decreased over the years but there are still about 20 people caught every year.

"That means there are still 20 people who are prepared to put their life, and the lives of others at risk - that is unacceptable,"

During last year's Christmas drink-drive campaign more than 150 vehicles were stopped in the first two weeks.

In total 819 vehicles were stopped, 13 people arrested and nine people charged, of those two were bailed and two released.

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