Police launch their Christmas Anti Drink and Drug Driving CampaignPhotograph of breath testing

The family of a man who was killed by a drink driver are joining forces with the police to help launch their annual Christmas Anti Drink and Drug Driving Campaign.

 

Kieran Lea Arnold from Cymau near Wrexham was killed following a road traffic collision on the A541 Pontblyddyn to Caergwrle road in June this year.

 

The 21-year-old plumber sustained fatal injuries during the two-vehicle collision of which one of the drivers, Robert Bryn Williams was found to be twice over the legal drink drive limit.

 

After pleading guilty the 48-year-old was recently sentenced to five years four months imprisonment and was banned from driving for three years.

 

Kieran’s Mum, Mrs Donna Lea is helping North Wales Police as they launch the campaign on behalf of the four Welsh police forces.

 

Photograph of a postcard with the 2013 stats for North Wales PoliceSpeaking during a short film created by the Force, Mrs Lea explained how losing Kieran has become a living nightmare for the family. She said: “Drink driving ruins people’s lives, it is total devastation for our family who now have been given a life sentence of living without our son, brother and grandson. It’s all been taken away by somebody who had the selfish attitude of thinking ‘you know, I’m going to have that extra drink’.”

 

“Kieran was a very popular lad who was well thought of by everybody – especially by his two younger brothers, Aaron and Steffan who adored him. As a youngster he was very sporty and played football for many local teams. As he got older he was passionate about going to the gym and started bodybuilding – even competing in the Mr Wales championships last year.

 

“He was a gentle giant who was very quietly spoken and loved his job as a plumber.”

 

Kieran was on his way home from work when the collision happened at around 5pm on Monday 17th June. Mrs Lea said: “The day started off as a normal working day. In the morning the boys went to school, my husband went to work, and I went to work a shift at the Wrexham Maelor Hospital.

 

“My husband had spoken to Kieran about when he was coming home at tea time, and it was only later on in the evening I was informed, whilst I was in work, of the accident.

 

“It’s one of the most horrific things you can ever be told and to be brought out of work and to be faced by police officers. It’s one of the hardest things and it’s every parent’s nightmare - a nightmare that you realise you are never going to wake up from and that you’ve got to live with it for the rest of your life.”

 

“For those who continue to drink and drive I would beg them not to do it. It’s just not worth it."

 

 

During the 2012 Christmas campaign over 500 drivers in Wales were caught over the drink drive limit after 35,493 breath tests.

 

North Wales Police carried out 18,780 breath tests – double the amount carried out during the 2011 Christmas campaign with 107 of those being positive.

 

The two highest readings recorded by North Wales Police during the 2012 Christmas campaign were 147 and 142, where two individuals were over four times the legal drink drive limit. The legal limit is 35.

 

Over the next four weeks, thousands of motorists face being stopped as teams from the four forces – North Wales, Dyfed Powys, South Wales and Gwent - conduct road checks at various locations across the country.

 

Deputy Chief Constable of North Wales Police Gareth Pritchard said: “To lose a child must be one of the hardest things a parent can face and I would like to thank Kieran’s family for assisting us with this year’s campaign.

“This year's All Wales Christmas Anti Drink Drive campaign will once again set about warning drivers that drinking and driving will not be tolerated.

 

“If you drink and drive you significantly increase the risk of killing an innocent person, or yourself or both. It is really that simple.

 

He added: “Drink driving is not just about Christmas. It ruins lives all year round. Perpetual drink drivers will choose to drink and drive any day of the year so we need support from the public 365 days a year to help us take these people off the roads of Wales.”

 

“Please don’t drink and drive. Think about the consequences. You could face losing your licence and your job, face imprisonment and, much worse, have to live with the guilt of taking a life for the rest of yours. Don’t take the risk.” 

 

Susan Storch, Chair of Road Safety Wales said: “Unfortunately too many drivers are still prepared to risk driving under the influence of drink or drugs.  No-one should be in any doubt that alcohol, in any amount, will have a detrimental effect on driving ability.  Road Safety Wales partners are committed to educating people about the consequences of impairment, and fully support the Police during this seasonal campaign, and throughout the year.”

 

If you have information relating to someone you think is driving whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs, please contact North Wales Police on 101 or via Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. In an emergency always dial 999.

 

Notes:

 

For the North Wales area in 2013 (statistics correct 26.11.13):

 

·         842 People – have been arrested so far for being over the legal limit

·         25% - of drivers caught drink driving were aged 16 to 25 years

·         12% - of killed or seriously injured casualties were as a result of a drink driver

·         20,730  people have been breath tested so far this year

·         December is one of the highest months for drink drive arrests

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