Police stop 204 vehicles in Taunton under Operation Tonic

OVER 200 vehicles were stopped by the police in Taunton on Friday night, leading to one arrest and seven reported offences.

The work was carried out under Operation Tonic, a police campaign to crack down on drink and drugs-driving in the winter months. 

In total, 204 vehicles were stopped and 25 breath tests were conducted. One person was arrested and seven people were reported for driving offences. 

Last week, the police announced that 169 people had been arrested under Operation Tonic since it launched for this year on November 21.

This works out at around 50 drivers a week for drink and drug-driving, an offence that acting chief inspector Andy Barry described as “not acceptable”.

Last year’s operation ran throughout December and resulted in 246 arrests.

This year’s campaign began earlier than usual to coincide with the FIFA World Cup, which kicked off in Qatar on November 20.

A spokesperson for the Avon and Somerset Police special constables said: “12 officers supported Operation Tonic in Taunton last night.

“204 vehicles stopped, 25 breath tests conducted, one person arrested, one vehicle prohibited and seven reported for offences.

“Our chief officer was on BBC Radio Somerset this morning at 08:10 talking about the operation.”

The acting chief inspector said: “There is no safe way to drink or drug drive – you need to find another way to get home.

“We also want to remind people that if you are out drinking in the evening, there remains a real possibility you could be over the limit in the morning too and not safe to drive.

“So again, plan ahead and if you need to drive the following day, don’t drink. If you choose to drink and drive, there is a high chance of being intercepted by our officers.”

Somerset County Gazette | News