Operation Blitzen is coming to Whanganui as Central District Police clamp down on drinking and driving ahead of the festive season.

Additional police will be out in force this weekend for Operation Blitzen, the first of several road policing operations with a strong emphasis on impaired driving planned for the central police district this summer.

Operation Blitzen will run on Friday and Saturday night, targeting drunk drivers across Whanganui, Manawatu and Taranaki. There will be checkpoints in place as well as mobile patrols.

"Traditionally, in the lead up to Christmas we experience a significant increase in road trauma caused by alcohol," Central District road policing manager Inspector Brett Calkin said.


"We understand that Christmas is a festive time of year and for many people the celebrations involve alcohol. Unfortunately some people haven't got the message and still choose to drink and drive in our region and as a result people are dying and being seriously injured."

Mr Calkin said people who drink and drive should expect to be caught and face the consequences.

"There are no excuses for drink driving - too many people are dying on our roads.

"All we are asking is that people who are drinking make alternative arrangements to get themselves home. Take a taxi, walk or find a sober driver.

"It truly isn't worth the risk of spending Christmas in hospital, it isn't worth spending your Christmas in prison and it's certainly not worth killing yourself or someone else."