Prevent drink or drug driving this Christmas: it’s everyone’s responsibility

Did you know, in a typical year, Surrey Fire and Rescue Service attends twice as many road traffic collisions than house fires?

Prevent drink or drug driving this Christmas

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Last winter (2020), 233 road traffic collisions were attended by Surrey Fire and Rescue Service. In the same timeframe, there were 54 collisions due to drink and drug driving. Including one, very sad, fatal collision.

The consequences, which could include:

  • A criminal record
  • A maximum penalty of six months in prison
  • An unlimited fine
  • An increase in your insurance premium
  • An automatic driving ban of at least one year (three years if you've been convicted twice in 10 years),
  • If you drive for work, your employer will see your conviction
  • Trouble travelling to countries such as the USA

In addition to the above, should anyone tragically cause death by driving under the influence, they can be charged with death by careless driving which carries a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison and an unlimited fine.


Be in with the chance of winning one of two Amazon Echo Auto's for your car by answering this short question.

How many times does the Police Officer knock on the door in our Christmas campaign video above?

Winner will be selected at random week commencing 3 January 2022 and the prize will be delivered by your local crew in January!

Entry to the competition is now closed and winners will be contacted soon.

Full Terms and conditions can be found online.

Top tips for drivers

Please help yourself and others to stay safe on Surrey's roads by following our top tips for drivers:

  • Wear your seat belt: Not wearing a seat belt can be a fatal decision even on short familiar journeys.
  • Keep your eyes on the road: There are plenty of things to keep your eye on as it is, so try to lessen the distractions in the car.
  • Stay Alert: drinking alcohol, taking drugs, being tired affects your judgement and reaction to hazards. Remember, you may still be over the limit the morning after. If you're going out with friends have a designated non-drinking driver, book public transport or a taxi.
  • Drive within the speed limit and be prepared to reduce your speed according to the conditions. Make sure you allow enough time for every journey.
  • Drive safely and courteously impresses your mates and keep them safe. taking risks does not impress, remember their safety is your (the driver's) responsibility their lives are in your hands

Helping younger drivers

Young drivers, aged 17 to 24, are more likely to be involved in a road traffic collision than most other age groups. Nationally, young people hold 8% of car driving licences, but account for 20% of those killed or seriously injured on the roads.

Safe Drive Stay Alive is an award winning road safety programme that targets this at risk group. Live performances are produced by Surrey Fire and Rescue Service, supported by other emergency services as well as members of the public, either having been involved in a serious or fatal collision, or as family members of someone that has died. These live, emotionally engaging, educational performances, comprising live speakers and films, along with follow up resources, aim to positively influence young people's attitudes, both as pre or new drivers and as passengers.

If you work at a school or college, you can request the link to our virtual video by visiting the website above.

We also offer a full range of road safety and sustainable travel options and training for schools.

Driving in wet weather or flooding

Our advice would be not to travel in heavy rain or storms unless absolutely necessary, but if you do have to travel, consider the following:

  • Reduce driving speeds and allow additional time to stop safely on wet roads
  • Increase your distance from the vehicle in front to improve your ability to see and plan ahead
  • Use headlights because rain and spray from other vehicles can make it difficult to see and be seen
  • If steering becomes unresponsive, it probably means that water is preventing the tyres from gripping the road - ease off the accelerator and slow down gradually
  • Test your brakes at the first safe opportunity if you have driven through water as they may be less effective; if they are not fully effective, gently apply light pressure while driving slowly, this will help to dry them out.
  • Avoid entering river fords during or after periods of rainfall - remember a car can be swept away in as little as two feet of water.
  • Slow down, cross in lower gears and keep revs up to maintain pressure in the exhaust to prevent water getting into the engine. If water is safe to enter, always test your vehicle brakes on exiting.

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