Have The Police Taken Their Eye Off The Ball Here?

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ToraToraTora | 10:44 Thu 01st Aug 2013 | Motoring
15 Answers
Clearly motorists deem it worh the risk with little chance of getting caught.


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not enough police. How many are taxpayers willing to pay for?
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Hire some more and take the money from things that we pay for that are not necessary, like the 800,000 non jobs created by new Labour. Or the EU budget then there's the Billions we spend on work shy layabouts. Plenty of money about.
oh yes, right, all the fault of Labour and Brussels. Sorry, I thought this was a serious question, not the introduction to a rant.
at the time I was a new driver, drinking and driving became socially unacceptable.

that would appear to no longer be the case.
The budget for Anti Drink Driving Campaign was cut by the coalition. Last year no new TV adverts were commissioned and very few broadcast slots were bought.

The result of that penny pinching is dead people.
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It is a serious question jno, you started getting silly, why don't you have a go at the question rather that trying to make some irrelevant political point.
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Like most criminal activity it's easily fixed but the political will is not there.
Too early to say

This is slightly irresponsible use of statistics - look at the bottom of the article.

These are provisional figures based on extrapolations

Last year's provisional were 50 higher than the official ones.

If it were 50 higher this year too we'd be looking at 240 deaths which would only be a 5% rise!

A 5% rise could quite easilly be part of the natural variation in the statistics and not representative of a greater trend

maybe not enough people are drink driving to gain enough revenue for politicians to bother?

they invest enough in technology such as anpr, speed cameras etc to the point wherby its impossible to get away with no mot or insurance.

easily done - each car in the uk has to be fitted with a breathalyser linked to the ignition.
Statistics can be interpreted in different ways.
Look at the figures for drink-drive deaths
1979: 1,640
1989: 810
1999: 460
2006: 560
2007: 410
2008: 400
2009: 380
2010: 240
2011: 230
2012: 290

You could argue it's going back up.
You could also say the downward trend has continued as it's still well below the figures in previous decades.
Labour could criticise the Coalition for the 2012 increase. But the Coalition could point out that the 2012 figure was lower than in any of the years when Labour was in power.
“Last year no new TV adverts were commissioned and very few broadcast slots were bought.”

Don’t quite understand, Gromit. I don’t recall seeing any adverts on the telly telling me not to murder people, not to commit armed robbery nor to rape any women. But I’m still expected to obey these laws. By your logic the result of similar “penny pinching” for those offences is also likely to result in dead or injured people. How is it that drink-driving needs an advertising campaign to help ensure that we don’t transgress? If somebody is going to drink-drive they will do so. An advert on the TV is hardly likely to dissuade them (if for no other reason they will probably be in the pub when it’s broadcast).

These figures just published may show an increase on 2011, but taken in context they are not too bad. In 2001 560 people were killed and 2,790 seriously injured in alcohol related road accidents. By 2011 these numbers had gone down to 280 (according to the government figures, not 230 as in the BBC report) and 1,290 - a reduction of more than 50%.

Drink driving offences reached a peak in 1988 with about 105,000 convictions. This dropped to a low of around 76,000 in 2001 but has been on the increase since then and now stands at around 95,000.. So I don’t believe it’s correct to assume the police have taken their eye off the ball. Since 2001 (when there were low convictions and high casualties) convictions have gone up and casualties have decreased. This would seem to indicate that drink driving is now more likely to result in a conviction and less likely to result in a death or serious injury. But this is a wide assumption and does not take into account reletive detection rates and many other factors. However this report on alcohol related incidents shines a bit of light on the bare figures.
my response was entirely serious. Police are already flat out (a lot of it is on paperwork). If you want them to spend more money and manpower on deterring/catching drunk drivers, it has to come from the taxpayer. Are taxpayers sufficiently willing to demand that this should be done? I'm not seeing it.
New Judge,
I know it does not prove anything, but the first time that virtually no anti drink driving campaign occurs and the number of fatalities rises for the first time in decades. It could be coincidence.

A report in the Daily Telegraph (published after my post) agrees with me

While the DfT insisted the figures were provisional, the rise will be hugely embarrassing to the Coalition, even though the overall trend in alcohol-linked motoring deaths is now about half that of a decade ago.
Earlier this year the Institute of Advanced Motorists disclosed that the Government’s spending on road safety campaigns had fallen from £19 million in 2008-9 to only £4 million in 2011-12.
In the last financial year the DfT spent £1.7 million on drink-drive related advertising alone, which is half of the £3.4 million spent by Labour in 2009-10, in its last year in office. //
jno. You say in your first post that there are not enough police. In your third post you hit the nail on the head that the police officers we do have are spending far too much time on non police work.

What we need is for the police to have to do less paperwork and get out patrolling their patches. I can't remember the last time I saw a police office, or a PCSO, walking down the road I live on and it's a main road. I understand our beat bobbies patrol in panda cars these days.What good is that?

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