999: What’s Your Emergency? Policing Cheshire's roads Date published: 14th September 2016 2.08pm

Following a short break 999: What’s Your Emergency is set to return to our screens at 9.00pm on Monday 19 September.

This episode explores the growing challenges faced by the emergency services on Britain’s roads at a time when there are more vehicles than ever before. Despite decades of safety campaigns and technological improvements our roads are still the place we’re most likely to be killed. “Perfectly reasonable people, as soon as they get in to a car turn into the Incredible Hulk,” says PC Sarah Brockley.

In Nantwich PC Vicky Howell and PC Greg Greaves pull over a 31-year-old woman suspected of driving under the influence despite being only a couple of streets from home. “It happens everywhere, absolutely everywhere, drink driving,” says PC Vicky Howell. “Certain people still deem it as being acceptable behaviour, it stills amazes me.”

After blowing over double the legal limit, the female is taken into custody – it’s only then that the gravity of the situation begins to sink in. “I could say they’re just misled, it’s the alcohol doing it, forcing them to get in a car, but it’s not, they’re just stupid,” says PC Howell. “If you put yourself in that situation, you drink that alcohol and you get in to a car, then you’re absolutely stupid.”

Since April Cheshire police have also been able to test people suspects for driving under the influence of cannabis and cocaine using a simple drug wipe – an introduction that has seen a dramatic rise in convictions for drug driving.

And as well as younger drivers, the emergency services find themselves helping older drivers under the influence of nothing more than advancing years, but the results can be equally dangerous.

Meanwhile with one call in every seven to Cheshire police relating to the county’s road, sadly collisions are not a rare occurrence. It’s a stark reality with devastating effects that touch not just the lives of those involved, but also many of the emergency service personnel who attend.

“We call them collisions as opposed to an accident,” says DS Paul Marsh. “An accident implies it’s nobody’s fault. In actual fact it’s generally somebody’s fault. There’s always an element of human error.”