Police castigate drink drivers

Drivers on the road with double the breath alcohol limit were caught in a Nelson Bays police operation.

Sixteen people are facing drink driving charges following the weekend operation targeting drink driving in both Nelson City and on rural roads.

Tasman District Commander Superintendent Richard Chambers said a number of those people recorded breath alcohol levels more than double the legal limit.

"I'm very disappointed that these people chose to get behind the wheel of a car after consuming that level of alcohol. A number of those drivers were detected leaving licensed premises which suggests to me that we have some bar managers shirking their responsibility as well.

"This sort of behaviour has to change and if people continue to ignore the message we will do our level best to remove them from the roads," he said.

Chambers said three drunk drivers were located in Mapua, with one blowing 876 microgrammes per litre of breath. The legal limit is 400mcg.

One person was located after leaving a licensed premises in Hira and blew 877mcg and another in Rai Valley blew 576mcg.

He said officers processing a person for drink driving in Upper Moutere also did voluntary breath tests on a number of people returning from a bus trip. Three of those people blew over 400mcg.

"I am in no doubt that had the police officers not been there those people would have got into their cars and driven home," Chambers said.

Drivers clocked speeding at up to 87kmh in a 50kmh area and 132kmh in a 100kmh area received tickets.

Over the past three weeks police have suspended more than 100 motorists for exceeding 100 demerit points. Most of the demerit points have been incurred for speeding. The result of accruing more then 100 demerit points within two years is the suspension of the person's driver licence for three months.

Chambers said police were very disappointed by the results and would continue to focus on both drink driving and speed. "The public can be assured we will be running a lot more of these operations and drivers in rural areas can expect as much attention as those in urban locations," he said.