Leeds 'has an issue' with young men drink driving - as figures show 32 per cent increase in problem

There has been a rise in drink-driving offences, according to police.There has been a rise in drink-driving offences, according to police.
There has been a rise in drink-driving offences, according to police.
A senior police officer has claimed that there is an “issue” with young men in Leeds drink driving.

He revealed that a third of those caught drink driving in Leeds are males under the age of 30, and that more work needed to be done to educate and discourage young people from driving under the influence.

Insp Nick Berry, from West Yorkshire Police, who has a specialism in road safety, made the comments during a Leeds council scrutiny committee discussion on road accidents and detection of irresponsible drivers in the city.

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Insp Berry said: “The officers are there to deal with the ‘fatal four’, which are: speeding, no seatbelts, using handheld mobile phones and drink and drug driving.

“Because someone has gone just a few miles per hour over the speed limit might be a causation to stop them and speak to them.

“As a force, all districts have seen an increase in drink and drug driving – in fact, drug driving has doubled.

"Drink driving has also increased by 32 per cent.

“The cohort of individuals that are drink driving are our younger population.

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“Thirty three percent of people drink driving in Leeds are under 30 years of age when they go into custody. And they are males under 30 years of age.”

“We have an issue with young males and drink and drug driving, which is an education issue for me as well.

This is why we are working with schools, colleges, universities, and apprenticeship groups to try and address those issues about why people now see this as socially acceptable to risk other people’s lives.”

District commander for Leeds Ch Supt Steve Cotter said that the increase in drug-driving related arrests was down to better equipment and detection by officers.

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He added: “Twenty five per cent of the drink and drug enforcement activity we have seen is in relation to drugs.

“This isn’t an increase in drug-related people driving, this is an increase in detection, and this coincides with a rollout of equipment to detect drug driving.

“I wouldn’t want anybody to walk out of the room thinking there is an increase in people taking drugs and driving, but there is an increase in our enforcement where we are increasing the number of people being caught.”