A FESTIVE crackdown on drink driving has been launched with the help of the parents of a teenager killed the morning after a party.
The annual operation will see police officers across the county breathalyse and drugs test thousands of drivers around the clock at high-profile checkpoints.
Janet and Andrew Alston, who live in Simonstone, joined the campaign after their 18-year-old son Matthew was killed while driving to a friend’s house still unknowingly drunk.
The collision happened in Whalley Road at 7am when his black Vauxhall Corsa, which was heading towards Portfield Bar, lost control on a bend and collided with a silver Seat Toledo travelling on the opposite carriageway.
Matthew, who had been to bed after the party, died at the scene as a result of multiple injuries.
His mangled car was on display yesterday at the launch, at Edge Hill University, to highlight the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol.
Mrs Alston said: “Matthew died as a result of driving the morning after he had been out drinking alcohol with friends.
“He drove without realising the amount of alcohol still in his body.
“On that day, when we were told Matt had died, we were just in shock, in a daze.
“It was devastating. Matt was just a normal lad, we are a normal family.
“He was so cheeky; Always laughing and joking. That's something we'll never have again.
“This ‘Morning After’ campaign highlights the true effects of drinking and driving.
“Too many young drivers are getting behind the wheel when they still have alcohol in their system.
“As Matt's parents we would urge you to really think about the morning after. Are you really sure you’re fit to drive, it’s not worth the risk so don't even chance it.”
Superintendent Richard Morgan said 280 people were killed across the country in accidents where the driver was over the limit last year.
He said: “We are very grateful for the support of two parents who continue to grieve for their son Matthew who was killed in a collision after drink driving.
“They are trying to save someone else from the pain they have endured.
"I would like people to listen to their words and consider the consequences of drinking and driving.
“We will be working throughout the festive period to keep the public safe and want people to enjoy the festive season but to remember the consequences of driving whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
“Our message is simple – do not drink and drive and do not take drugs and drive.”