Drug driving arrests have more than doubled within the first quarter of the year throughout the county Essex Police confirm.

Between January and March 2018 there were 224 drug driving arrests but that figure has more than doubled to 470 during the same period this year.

This has contributed to a shocking 50 per cent rise, providing officers a clear crackdown on drink and drug driving this summer.

Acting Chief Inspector Sharn Taylor, head of Roads Policing, described the latest figures as “a real concern”.

She said: “Drug driving arrests outstripped drink driving arrests for the first time ever last November and since then we’ve regularly seen more arrests for it.

“It is totally unacceptable. Taking drugs like cocaine and cannabis is illegal anyway but to then get behind the wheel of a car, putting your life at risk as well as other road users, is reckless and we won’t stand for it.

Acting Chief Inspector Taylor asked residents to think twice if they ever could live knowing they killed someone whilst under the influence.

Essex Police are trained and equipped with drug wipes the chances of being arrested and banned from driving is more likely than ever before.

“My officers will be carrying proactive operations throughout the summer as well as acting on intelligence and stopping people driving erratically,” stated Acting Chief Inspector Taylor.

“If get caught drink or drug driving you could lose your licence. You could lose your job as a result and that could have a huge impact on you and your family.

“Simply, don’t do it. Our message this summer is drive safe, drive sober.”