Rural residents who drink and drive are being warned they will be caught after Northland police targeted rural areas and nabbed a number of allegedly drunk motorists, including a repeat offender in his 70s.
Northland Police communications officer Sarah Kennett said some rural residents thought that because they lived in isolated areas they could easily get away with drink driving. But Ms Kennett said that was incorrect, with police in the last week targeting rural and urban roads for drink-drivers.
On Saturday, a 55-year-old Paparoa man was charged with driving with excess breath alcohol after he allegedly had a level of 499 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath. Motorists aged 20 and over have a 400mcg limit and those under 20 a zero limit.
On Sunday, police saw a car leave the Paparoa Hotel about 6.41pm and stopped the driver on Petley Rd.
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Ms Kennett said the man, 78, allegedly had a reading of 562mcg and was charged with driving with excess breath alcohol for a third or subsequent time.
"Just because you live in a rural area doesn't mean you won't get stopped and breath-tested. We regularly patrol rural areas and don't just stay in the urban areas," she said.
About 8pm on Friday, a Whangarei man, 49, was stopped on Western Hills Drive and allegedly recorded 513mcg. Just after 12am on Saturday, a Whangarei 18-year-old allegedly had a reading of 400mcg.
Both were charged with driving with excess breath alcohol.
On Saturday at 10.30pm, a man, 48, who was stopped on Kamo Rd, allegedly had a 762mcg reading.
He was charged with driving with excess breath alcohol for a third or subsequent time.