POLICE say there has been a "shocking" increase in the number of crashes that involve drink or drugs this month compared to December last year.

Officers made a total of 120 arrests in the first 27 days of their Christmas crackdown across North Yorkshire, Operation Attention, for offences relating to drink and drug driving.

Forty-one of the arrests were as a result of crashes.

Temporary Inspector Paul Cording said: "This is a small increase on last year's figure of 119 arrests in the same period. Out of these arrests 47 have been drug related in some way with 38 of these being as a result of positive roadside drug screening tests.

"Of the arrests made so for 41 have been as a result of road traffic collisions. This is a shocking increase from a total of 18 collision-related arrests in the same period last year.

"This means over a third of those arrested so far were involved in a road traffic collision most likely resulting from their intoxication."

The average reading of those providing a breath test has increased with 12 offenders providing readings more than three times the limit.