CREWE people are being urged to 'Stop the Rats' and shop drink-drivers to the police over Christmas.
As the party season gets into swing, traffic police are determined to put a stop to anyone driving after a festive tipple.
And this year they hope to get the public behind their blitz on drunken drivers by asking them to ring and report motorists they suspect could be putting themselves and others at risk.
Police Sergeant Tony Hill, the new man at the helm of the traffic unit, said: 'This will be our toughest ever campaign to get drunken drivers off the roads.
'We believe most right-minded individuals are behind us and want to stop drunken drivers being a danger to themselves and others.
'By calling us with information they will help protect families from the terrible tragedy of a fatal road smash at Christmas.'
During December last year, there were 75 road crashes in the Crewe police division. Most were due to drink.
The figure was an improvement on the previous year but police are keen to see even fewer incidents in 2001.
More officers will be placed on car patrol, on the look-out for drunken drinkers round-the-clock.
Sgt Hill said: 'Many people wrongly believe they get a ticket after giving a positive test. The fact is they are criminals and in some circumstances they end up in the cells.
'Anyone who has ever been at the scene of an horrendous death crash will understand why we take this tough approach.
'There are no second chances, no flexibility, we never let anyone 'off.' The drink drive law is written in stone. Alcohol and motor vehicles is a lethal combination.'
Police have the power to breathalyse anyone who is involved in road crash, no matter how minor.
They can also stop and breathalyse anyone who is committing a moving traffic offence such as having a defective light, ignoring road signs like driving up a one way street or crossing white lines, or is speeding or driving in a manner which officers believe has been influenced by drink.
Sgt Hill added: 'The Stop the Rats campaign means we will have eyes everywhere. Having a Christmas drink with colleagues, then driving home, hoping not to be stopped, is not worth the risk. Our message to them is find another way home.'
* The confidential Rats hotline is 0800 358 1131.