Police pulled over 40,000 vehicles in a nationwide blitz yesterday.

Superintendent Paula Rose said the checkpoints were intended to make people aware of rising police concern at the number of people driving after drinking alcohol or taking drugs.

"While most people are very careful about driving while under the influence of drink or drugs, we need to continue to keep the pressure on all road users to behave responsibly," Ms Rose said.

Of the 40,000 people stopped, 104 were over the drink-driving limit, 32 were arrested and 23 vehicles were impounded.

"In police, we are not prepared to wait while people die; we know that our presence on the road has a significant deterrent effect and we want to maximise it," Ms Rose said.

"We will continue to be out in force over the whole country and we will apprehend anyone we find driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs - no matter who they are."

- NZPA