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Driving Under Influence

Volume 487: debated on Tuesday 3 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many breath tests were taken in each year since 1997; and how many accidents were caused by drunk drivers in each police authority in each of those years. (251340)

The information requested on breath tests conducted, broken down by police force area for the years 1997 to 2006 (latest available) are provided in the following table.

Data for 2007 are due to be published in spring 2009.

The Department for Transport publishes estimates on the number of drink-drive accidents where one or more of the motor vehicle drivers or riders involved were over the legal limit. These estimates are calculated on a national basis. Police force area estimates are not available.

The estimates are published as an article 3, entitled “Drinking and driving” in “Road Casualties Great Britain - Annual report 2007”. Copies of the report have been deposited in the Library of the House and is also available at the following web address:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/statistics/datatablespublications/accidents/casualtiesgbar/roadcasualtiesgreatbritain20071

Screening breath tests by police force area, England and Wales, 1997 to 20061

Police force area

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Avon and Somerset

16,000

19,700

19,200

15,800

15,400

15,100

24,500

27,300

21,900

15,800

Bedfordshire

6,000

5,300

2,900

3,300

4,200

6,200

6,600

7,800

6,700

3,100

Cambridgeshire

19,100

17,800

13,600

12,800

12,700

13,000

12,300

12,300

12,500

12,500

Cheshire

25,500

23,300

20,500

15,800

13,600

12,200

11,900

20,200

22,000

35,700

Cleveland

31,600

34,200

28,600

18,800

14,100

11,000

8,700

8,100

10,800

11,300

Cumbria

11,200

9,400

7,100

6,100

5,100

4,700

5,500

8,400

13,600

13,800

Derbyshire

34,500

35,700

49,200

52,000

42,100

37,900

32,600

31,000

17,700

16,000

Devon and Cornwall

15,200

15,700

14,700

13,000

13,500

12,600

10,900

10,700

10,400

13,600

Dorset

9,100

10,100

9,200

12,300

10,400

10,400

8,500

6,900

7,900

8,700

Durham

4,300

7,400

12,700

15,300

16,300

9,500

7,600

6,100

7,700

6,900

Essex

28,700

28,400

24,100

27,200

18,900

16,100

15,500

25,300

34,200

28,400

Gloucestershire

9,400

9,300

8,300

8,200

9,600

9,300

8,600

7,100

9,100

10,100

Greater Manchester

35,500

31,200

21,500

27,300

23,900

23,200

20,900

19,900

18,900

18,100

Hampshire

25,000

27,300

31,600

35,200

35,200

35,200

37,500

38,400

38,300

34,800

Hertfordshire

7,400

8,100

7,000

6,000

5,500

4,300

4,000

7,300

11,900

12,700

Humberside

6,500

8,300

8,100

9,400

7,500

8,700

6,500

5,600

5,700

10,000

Kent

9,100

27,500

32,700

32,200

32,200

34,200

24,600

32,000

31,200

31,700

Lancashire

21,300

20,300

19,100

15,500

10,000

10,600

8,000

10,200

13,000

16,400

Leicestershire

10,200

20,200

21,100

18,800

14,900

14,500

12,000

15,800

14,400

10,000

Lincolnshire

20,200

25,900

21,000

12,100

13,600

9,000

12,100

11,300

11,400

10,600

London, City of

3,600

3,300

1,700

1,100

1,100

1,400

1,200

700

1,100

1,600

Merseyside

14,800

18,700

18,600

12,800

7,200

7,000

7,700

5,000

8,000

10,600

Metropolitan Police

137,900

111,400

99,800

93,800

65,100

57,200

56,000

61,500

67,500

65,000

Norfolk

9,200

12,400

11,600

9,100

9,100

5,300

4,000

4,800

10,400

7,800

North Yorkshire

10,500

9,900

8,100

6,700

7,400

7,300

8,300

8,600

9,300

10,100

Northamptonshire

7,100

4,700

5,300

5,800

4,500

3,300

3,100

3,200

5,200

4,300

Northumbria

11,900

12,200

12,500

12,700

12,400

11,800

11,100

9,800

9,300

7,900

Nottinghamshire

11,500

8,900

8,400

8,400

7,700

5,800

7,100

8,200

7,900

7,200

South Yorkshire

14,200

12,600

16,100

19,200

18,000

14,400

12,100

6,500

13,700

10,300

Staffordshire

13,800

15,400

10,100

7,700

4,700

5,300

5,100

13,700

14,300

12,700

Suffolk

12,300

15,600

15,100

9,200

8,600

8,900

11,600

10,600

8,900

9,100

Surrey

11,200

11,400

11,700

12,400

13,300

7,500

8,900

9,500

9,600

8,300

Sussex

26,100

17,400

17,900

20,800

21,800

17,300

17,200

15,200

18,000

18,700

Thames Valley

33,100

34,200

30,300

30,800

26,200

25,300

16,000

15,400

14,600

13,500

Warwickshire

8,700

8,700

8,600

7,100

5,800

5,100

5,800

5,500

4,800

4,500

West Mercia

18,300

19,100

12,300

8,900

9,100

8,200

6,300

8,000

8,800

11,300

West Midlands

22,600

24,100

21,300

16,200

12,200

10,500

11,000

6,600

6,900

6,200

West Yorkshire

23,300

22,900

18,800

18,300

17,200

16,700

14,200

16,900

15,400

18,000

Wiltshire

7,400

7,100

6,800

6,500

5,900

5,900

5,900

7,400

7,200

8,700

Dyfed-Powys

8,500

9,200

9,900

7,400

7,000

7,300

6,000

6,700

6,900

7,300

Gwent

12,200

11,200

10,600

10,100

6,400

3,800

2,800

1,600

2,000

1,700

North Wales

13,300

15,200

15,900

15,000

15,100

19,600

17,300

24,200

21,800

19,600

South Wales

23,100

24,900

20,700

17,800

19,300

17,500

16,900

16,700

16,300

17,100

England and Wales2

800,300

815,500

764,500

714,800

623,900

570,200

534,300

578,000

607,400

601,600

1 Following a comparison between the number of positive breath tests reported by each police force in 2006 and the number of court proceedings for drink-driving related offences, it became clear that there was under-reporting in a number of forces. As a result Essex, Humberside, Lancashire, Norfolk, Northumbria, Staffordshire, Dyfed-Powys, Gwent and South Wales court proceedings figures have been substituted for the positive breath test figures. Similar adjustments were also made to various forces data between 1998 and 2005.

2 Figures may not add up to total for England and Wales due to rounding.