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Probe launched Garda arrested after failing breath test following crash with van

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Garda (stock image)

Garda (stock image)

Garda (stock image)

A serving garda was arrested after failing a breath test following a head-on crash in the early hours of Saturday morning.

The occupant of the other vehicle had to be treated in hospital for their injuries.

The incident happened just after 5.30am on Saturday in the south of the country when the car being driven by an off-duty garda collided with a van.

It is reported that the van driver had to be cut from the wreckage after the crash but was not seriously hurt.

The off-duty garda was arrested after failing a roadside breath test and taken to a garda station.

Gardai confirmed the incident in a statement.

"On December 19 2020 shortly after 5:30am, Gardaí attended at the scene of a traffic collision involving a car and van. The driver of the car, an off-duty member of An Garda Síochána, was arrested having failed a roadside breath test for alcohol," the statement said.

"He was taken to a Garda Station and later released without charge. The driver of the van was treated for minor injuries at Cork University Hospital. The investigation is ongoing," it added.

Under drink driving laws a person who fails a roadside breath test is brought to a garda station where a further blood or urine test is carried out.

It was unclear this morning what the outcome of such tests were in relation to this incident.

At the beginning of December An Garda Siochana launched a high-profile road safety campaign urging motorists not to drive after taking alcohol or drugs.

Chair of the Road Safety Authority, Liz O’Donnell, said people were still drink driving despite the closure of pubs.

“The pubs may be closed because of Covid, but people are still getting alcohol and still getting into cars. If you are drinking at home you have to be careful of the measures you pour. We pour twice the normal level at home without realising,” she added.

At the launch of the campaign gardai said there will be high visibility checkpoints and mandatory roadside intoxicant testing.

Professor Denis Cusack of the Medical Bureau of Road Safety said extra roadside testing units have been issued to gardai to aid in detection of drink and drug use among drivers.

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