Police officers across Europe will begin a week-long campaign on Monday 9 December to raise awareness of the dangers of driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

The campaign is co-ordinated by TISPOL (the European Traffic Police Network), and involves officers in all member countries (including all EU Member States) conducting alcohol and drug checks at any time of the day and night.

TISPOL President Volker Orben said: “It’s also important to be aware of the continuing effects of alcohol the day after an evening of drinking. Your body takes time to remove alcohol from your system. If it is still present in your body, then it will be identified during a breath test. That’s why a night’s sleep is no guarantee that you’re safe and legal to drive the next morning.”

Police officers have become particularly aware of the increasing frequency of driving under the influence of drugs, especially among young drivers.

TISPOL has stressed that drivers must be as wary of medicines as they are of recreational drugs.

“If you are taking medicine, whether prescribed or purchased over the counter, then read the notes of advice that go with it,” Mr Orben warned. “If these tell you not to drive after taking the medicine, then do not drive. The advice is there for a reason, to keep you and others safe.”

Drivers who are in any doubt about medicines and driving, are strongly advised to consult a healthcare professional before they get behind the wheel.

Drivers can expect highly visible and widespread enforcement of alcohol and drug laws during the week-long operation, Mr Orben concluded.

Last reviewed 3 December 2019