Many drunk drivers caught during New Year celebrations

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From December 31 to January 2, the State Police caught 52 drivers under the influence of alcohol or narcotics. Many were heavily intoxicated, Artūrs Smilga, chief of the State Police Transport Monitoring and Coordination Office, said in an interview with Latvian Radio January 3.

The police worked in an enhanced mode during the New Year celebrations, paying particular attention to drunk drivers. From December 31 to January 2, 52 drivers were caught, including two under the influence of narcotics.

Last year 59 drunk drivers were caught over the holidays.

“As in other years and as in any big celebration, most of the [intoxicated] drivers are heavily intoxicated, that is, above 0.5 pro mille. This year, they were 36 cases. The dominant profile of the infringer is a male aged 31 to 50,” Smilga said.

On New Year's Eve there were 74 road accidents with eight harmed, and on January 1 there were 43 accidents with seven harmed. Compared to Christmas, the situation on the New Year was calmer.

Accurate statistics on the January 2 accidents are still being compiled, but the police spokesman acknowledged that the second half of the day on the roads was tense due to the weather conditions.

“The roads are icy and the braking distance is longer. I therefore ask the road users to be tolerant to the attentive drivers,” Smilga added.

Meanwhile, firefighters and paramedics reported a number of calls related to New Year's celebrating and pyrotechnic-related accidents over the New Year celebration.

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