POLICE stopped and breathalysed 9,150 Merseyside motorists during the Christmas crackdown, with 198 drivers arrested.

It means that 97% of those tested were below the legal drink-drive limit

Figures released today also show that during the month-long campaign, there was a reductionin car crashes, with 398 compared to 425 in 2012, a reduction of 6.3%.

Chief Inspector John Hogan said: "We know that the majority of drivers on our roads drive responsibly and these results show that drivers are recognising the risk that driving while under the influence poses to themselves and other road users.

"Of the 9,152 drivers stopped, just 2.6% went on to fail the test and were arrested.

"However small this percentage is, it is still disappointing that a minority of drivers continue to put themselves and others at risk by drinking or taking drugs and driving.

"Our message goes beyond Christmas - don't drink or take drugs and drive. 

"We are determined to do all we can to make our roads safer and I urge drivers to continue to play their part by not drink- or drug-driving."

Last Christmas, 97% of motorists were found to be under the legal drink-drive limit with 175 arrests being out of 7,832 tests.