With Euro 2016 about to kick off and Police campaigns in place, we urge people to avoid the temptation to drink drive, stay safe and enjoy the tournament.
Today marks the start of Euro 2016, and the hopes of a nation will once gain rest on the England football team as we go in search of our first International tournament win for 50 years.
After a whirlwind season in the Premier League, that shook up the odds and produced a fairy-tale story for relative minnows, Leicester City, optimism is at fever pitch for this current bunch and many fans will be taking to the pubs and indeed to France, to try and cheer the boys along to a famous win.
It promises to be a superb four weeks, but with all of the elation and excitement, it is important that England supporters act sensibly when it comes to the amount they drink and their decisions when it comes to leaving the pub after the match and making their way home.
On Saturday 14th June, 2014, the night of England’s World Cup opener versus Italy, in Brazil, Greater Manchester Police recorded 63 positive breathalyser tests at the roadside. That means that out of the people that were stopped, there was a minimum of 63 potential risks of drink related road traffic accidents.
For this tournament, a police crackdown has been launched on those influenced of drinks and drugs. The campaign has started today to coincide with the tournament kick off this evening. Officers in Wales are preparing to stop thousands throughout the month-long tournament, meanwhile in England; a campaign has been launched to remind fans not to drink drive home after watching the match.
Northumbria Police has gone further to try and encourage people not to drink drive, releasing footage captured by traffic cops displaying the effects that alcohol can have on them, which you can see below.
The last thing we want to do is take the fun out of the tournament, far from it, as we will be cheering on ‘Roy’s Boys’ along with the majority of the country. Believe it or not, if you heed the safety warnings and take the necessary steps to not drink drive, then you will actually enjoy the tournament a whole lot more.
Scott Rees & Co Partner and massive football fan, David Byrne (pictured), said: “I am looking forward to the beginning of the tournament and hopefully this England team can bring an end to the wait for a trophy.”
“We are not saying that people should not go out and enjoy themselves while the football on, they absolutely should, but at the same time they should spare a thought for others and not get into their cars after they have been out to watch the game and had a few drinks.”
“In most cases, it is not the person who decides to drink drive that gets hurt the most by their decision to chance their arm, it is the pedestrian they hit on the way home, the families of the father, mother, son or daughter, who don’t make it home because they were involved in a crash with a drunk driver.”
“This isn’t just about spreading horror stories; this is about trying to influence people in to making the right decision and making the evening more enjoyable for everyone. If people heed this advice, then hopefully we won’t have any more of these horror stories to tell.”
Tips to avoid temptation to drink drive and stay safe
Here are just a few simple tips to help avoid the urge to drink drive and stay safe for fans to consider before they go tomorrow to watch England’s first match.
- Pre-order a taxi home or share lifts and agree on a designated driver for each match.
- If you are walking home, make sure you are visible to road user. It is not just drunk drivers that can carry potential risks.
- Do not walk home drunk on your own and at the same time, ensure that if any of your friends are drunk following the match, that they do not walk home alone either.
- Don’t drive in the morning. Alcohol takes time to pass through your system and although you might be of the opinion that you are just hungover and that there is no threat to your driving, your instincts will still be influenced by the alcohol in your system and can still cause accidents to happen.
Driving to France?
Many fans will also be considering making the trip across to France to take in the full atmosphere, which promises to be fantastic, in and around the grounds.
With the Channel Tunnel and of course the ferry services, it is a lot easier to make the journey to France, without having to splash the cash on flights, and the same tips also apply to those fans who are going to be doing this and it is important to note, that the drink drive limit in France is lower than over in the UK, so there isn’t even room, realistically for one drink.
Security will also be extremely high at this year’s tournament, due to the various terror attacks that have occurred in the past few years. If you are making the journey across, download the terror alert app. Hopefully it will not be needed but it is there as a precautionary measure and will keep you posted if anything does go wrong.
There is also some industrial unrest in the country, which will mainly affect the air and rail services, with Air France pilots due to strike from tomorrow until the 14th June. This of course increases the likeliness of fans deciding to travel by road, meaning there will be more cars travelling. Even more reason to ensure that you stay off the ale if you are driving. You should also ensure that your petrol tanks are full before you cross the channel.
The first game kicks off at 8pm tonight and sees the hosts take on Romania at the Stade de France, in what promises to be an entertaining first game for all to enjoy. Just remember, that it will be a far more enjoyable occasion, if everyone makes it home safely.
1. By UEFA [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons