Letter: Drink drivers should get tougher punishments

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Letter writer Ivan Humphrey says drink drivers should be handed tougher sentences...

I have long believed that in today’s society there is next to no moral responsibility.

One only has to look at the amount of people that continue to be caught drink or drug driving in Northamptonshire during this year’s police’s seasonal campaign, as reported in the Northants Telegraph as part of the police’s new name and shame policy.

This is not to mention all those that still continue to use their telephone while driving.

In most instances, judging by the Telegraph’s weekly court appearance column, those that are caught drink driving are also found to have had no insurance, and no driving licence.

Some are even apprehended while serving out a ban for a previous motoring related offence.

However, the mere fact that people continue to be caught is a miracle in itself when you factor in the fact that the police’s traffic divisions have borne the brunt of Home Office cuts, with 24 per cent of front line traffic officers having been made surplus to requirements since 2012.

Nevertheless, the fact that people still get caught is not completely dumbfounding.

Education around alcohol intake is something that must be improved.

You cannot go out on an evening, drink a bottle of wine, go home in a taxi and then proceed to get in your car for the school run the morning and still be under the drink drive limit.

I also believe that it is high time that we had a change in the law with regard to the punishment of those that still continue to drink and drug drive.

Some of the sentences that are handed down are nothing more than a slap on the wrist.

Bans ranging from 18 months to two years and a token fine seems to be the norm.

A mandatory ban of a minimum of 10 years, coupled with the confiscation of their vehicles and a fixed penalty fine of £5,000 should be enough to act as a reasonable detterance.

With a custodial sentence for those who register more than 100mg of alcohol in the blood just for good measure.

The scourge of drink and drug driving and the life changing effects it can have on others will not go away otherwise!

Ivan Humphrey, Kettering