Nearly 150 police jobs are to go as part of £8 million cuts announced by the Avon & Somerset force. It follows the biggest ever review of how the service operates. Custody suites in Bridgwater and Taunton will also to close.
But Chief Constable Nick Gargan has told our reporter Richard Payne that by reallocating resources and using better technology, there will actually be more officers on the streets.
More than 80 people have been arrested this month as part of Avon and Somerset Police's summer drink driving campaign.
Of the 86 arrests, three were for drug driving. Hundreds of motorists are being stopped across the force area, with antisocial 'boy racers' also being targeted by officers. The campaign runs until the end of the month.
Obviously any arrests for drink or drug driving are too many, but we are finding that many people we've stopped are aware of the dangers of driving under the influence and simply don't do it. We want to deter motorists by education and information and it seems that many people are getting the message and are supportive of our campaign.
– Inspector Shane Hawkings of the Roads Policing Unit
Police have arrested nearly 50 people for drink or drug driving across Avon and Somerset in the first week of the Operation Tonic Christmas campaign. Since it started on Dec 1, a total of 47 motorists who have been stopped have tested positive.
This Christmas police are asking people to shop a drink or drug driver by ringing 999 or texting the word drunk to a special number, 81819, from their mobile and giving the driver's details if they see anyone getting behind the wheel while under the influence.
I am very sad to hear that Colin Port is standing down as Chief Constable of Avon & Somerset Constabulary. Colin has been an outstanding Chief Constable over the last seven years and we will not find it easy to replace him with a person of such professionalism, integrity and quality of performance.
The new Police and Crime Commissioners will need to work hard to make sure they retain senior officers of high quality so that we don’t lose some of the top performers within our police service.