TODAY The News launches its annual campaign aimed at steering people clear of drink-driving this Christmas.
Dozens of pubs have already pledged to offer free soft drinks to designated drivers during the festive party season by signing up to our Steer Clear campaign.
Drink-driving is a problem and latest Hampshire Constabulary figures show 631 arrests were made across Portsmouth, Fareham, Gosport and Havant this year so far.
A total of 3,984 drivers were stopped at the roadside during the police’s Christmas drink-drive campaign last year, with 247 of those providing positive breath tests or refusing to take the test.
Our campaign has been backed by Supt Chris Brown, head of the joint roads policing units for Hampshire Constabulary and Thames Valley police.
He said: ‘The designated driver idea is a simple but effective way of doing so and it’s good to see The News encouraging landlords to offer free drinks.’
This year the police will provide live running scores of how many drivers have been stopped and failed breath tests using social networking sites Twitter and Facebook.
Jamie England, manager of the Isambard Kingdom Brunel pub in Guildhall Square said: ‘All eight Wetherspoon pubs fully back the News initiative.
‘We want our customers to enjoy themselves but to do so responsibly.’
Landlords taking part in the campaign have pledged to give the designated driver in a group of four or more a free soft drink between 6pm and 9pm from Thursday, December 1, through to and including New Year’s Eve.
To join and for more information on the Steer Clear campaign, call Rory McKeown on (023) 9262 2540 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
PUBS SIGNED UP SO FAR
Bar Risa – Gunwharf Quays
The Blue Bell Inn, South Street, Emsworth
Carisbrook Arms, Carisbrooke Road, Gosport
Clarence Tavern, Clarence Road, Gosport
Delme Arms, Cams Hill, Fareham
Five Alls, Forton Road, Gosport
Harvest Home, Denmead
Old Vic, St Pauls Road, Portsmouth
Park Tavern, Park Road, Gosport
The Foresters Arms, Anns Hill Road, Gosport
Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Guildhall Walk
The White Swan, Guildhall Walk, Portsmouth
The Trafalgar, Edinburgh Road, Portsmouth
The Lord Palmerston, Palmerston Road, Southsea
The John Jacques, Fratton
The Sir John Baker, North End
The First Post, Cosham
Sir Alec Rose, Port Solent
The Waterhole Bar, Portsmouth