A SUMMER drink and drug drive campaign has been launched by Cumbria Constabulary.

The Operational Support Unit is urging the public this summer to save lives by not driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Sergeant Paul Brown, from the Operational Support Unit, said: “With events such as the Appleby Horse Fair and the World Cup occurring during the month, as a force, we are expecting to see a large number of people going out and enjoying themselves.

“We urge those who do this to act responsibly and not get behind a wheel after consuming alcohol.

“We will also target young drivers as statistically they are more likely to be killed or seriously injured in a road traffic collision.

“A person under the influence of alcohol cannot control a vehicle responsibly and safely. Drinking alcohol can severely impact reaction time as well as impair your co-ordination.”

This June will see a number of local events occur across the county as well as the 2014 World Cup hitting our TV screens.

Police anticipate that the county’s pubs and clubs will be filled with football fans watching the tournament with friends and family and are urging those who do enjoy it with a drink, to leave the driving to someone who is sober.

Sgt Brown added: “Our aim is to prevent danger to road users and with the assistance from members of the public we can take action more effectively.

“Prevention is definitely best when it comes reducing the risk to people’s lives that drink and drugs present.”

Last year’s summer campaign saw 1636 breath tests conducted leading to 52 arrests.

Of the 1636, 310 followed traffic collisions in which 16 people were found to have been over the legal limit.

The number who were tested and under 25 years of age was 252, with 11 of those either being over the limit or failing to provide a test.

Police and Crime Commissioner Richard Rhodes said: “There are lots of social occasions over the summer months and we want people to enjoy these but act responsibly and with consideration for others this includes antisocial behaviour to driving whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs.”

This year’s campaign will also see the continuation of the force’s appeal to members of the public to contact police to report people they suspect may be driving whilst under the influence of drink or drugs.