22 drunk drivers caught


A Tauranga driver, alleged to be more than two times over the legal breath alcohol limit, burst through a police checkpoint with four young children in her car.

Tauranga police said the 29-year-old woman failed to stop for police and sped through a 50 km/h area.

When she was finally stopped and breath tested, the woman gave a reading of over 1000 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath, two and a half times over the legal limit.

The incident has been referred to Child, Youth and Family and the woman will appear in Tauranga District Court on November 2 charged with driving with excess breath alcohol, failing to stop for police and dangerous driving.

The woman was one of 22 drivers caught over the legal breath alcohol limit by Tauranga Police's Traffic Alcohol Group over the weekend.

Eight vehicles were impounded and 14 driver licences were suspended due to the driver's breath alcohol exceeding 50 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath.

After two weekends of Operation Profile, the Traffic Alcohol Group has conducted a series of checkpoints and caught 37 drivers.

Acting Sergeant Stringer of the Western Bay of Plenty Traffic Alcohol Group said the ultimate goal was to deter people influenced by alcohol from getting behind the wheel of a motor vehicle and putting themselves, their friends, families and the community as a whole at risk.

"Thirty-seven drink drivers were caught over two weekends and 346 drink drivers this year in Western Bay of Plenty alone, it is disappointing that people still are more willing to risk lives by drinking and driving than catch a taxi,'' Sergeant Stringer said.

"My team are 110 per cent committed to reducing the incidence of drink driving.''

Sergeant Stringer said the results were promising in relation to the new legislation for zero alcohol limits for under 20's.

Of the 22 drink drivers caught this weekend only two were under the age of 20.

"This is an encouraging sign that our youth are now in a position to set a benchmark for the rest of the community.''

Sergeant Stringer has a simple message for drink drivers - ``If you drink and drive this summer we will catch you.''

- Bay of Plenty Times

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