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Traffic - Christmas Enforcement Campaign

This month on Crimecall Garda Adrian Corcoran was in studio to talk about An Garda Siochána’s Christmas and New Year Enforcement Campaign 2021 which will commence on the 1 December and will continue right through to the 5 January 2022.

The operation will focus on drink and drug driving. It will see an increase in enforcement in terms of mandatory intoxicant testing checkpoints which are checkpoints where Gardai have the power to test drivers for the presence of alcohol and drugs.

During the Enforcement Campaign for the Christmas period in 2020 there were 567 people arrested for drink driving and 225 people arrested for drug driving.

There were 23 people arrested on Christmas Eve and 15 arrested on Christmas Day so our Roads Policing members will be out there every day over the Christmas period posting checkpoints throughout the country.

The number of people arrested for drug driving in 2020 was double the number arrested for the same period in 2019. This year has seen this trend continue with almost 3000 people arrested so far since 1st January on suspicion of drug driving.

Since April 2017 Gardai have the power to carry out roadside drug testing. This is done by analysing a saliva sample at the roadside and if it shows the presence of drugs the person will then be arrested and taken to a Garda station where they will be required to provide a blood sample. This is then sent to the Medical Bureau of Road Safety where it is analysed and it is the result of this examination that is used by Gardai as evidence in court. 

Figures show that over 3600 people have been arrested on suspicion of drink driving since the 1st January this year. Penalties for drink driving range from 3 months to 6 years disqualification, a fine of up to €5000 or 6 months imprisonment. Alcohol is a factor in 38% of all fatal crashes.

Garda Corcoran asked people going out socialising this Christmas to plan ahead. Leave the car at home and arrange an alternative mode of transport to take you home. People should also be mindful of driving the next morning after a night out. Make sure enough time has elapsed to allow the alcohol to pass through your system.


  • Never, ever Drink/Drug drive
  • Book a taxi or use public transport
  • Nominate a Designated Driver
  • Make sure you are Alcohol free the next morning