Assistant Commissioner John Hartley
Traffic Services Commander
Police Say Holiday Season Road Carnage Was Avoidable – OPERATION SAFE ARRIVAL
Senior Police say much of the carnage on the State’s roads over the festive season could have been avoided if motorists had shown greater personal responsibility.
OPERATION SAFE ARRIVAL – the annual Christmas/New Year road safety campaign – concluded just before midnight last night.
During the 17-day operation, 23 people were killed in 20 crashes – the majority single-vehicle incidents involving a car rolling or crashing into a stationary object.
Police conducted a total of 473, 132 breath tests resulting in 1,375 being charged with drink-driving offences. They also detected 16,834 speeding motorists and issued 21,460 infringements for other traffic offences.
Traffic Services Commander, Assistant Commissioner John Hartley, said the loss of 23 lives over the festive season is a tragedy and could have been avoided.
“We have had 23 families left heartbroken and mourning the loss of their loved ones at what should have been one of the happiest times of the year.” Assistant Commissioner Hartley said.
“The saddest part is that most of these deaths occurred in single-vehicle crashes in which speed, alcohol or fatigue were probable causes. There have been tens of thousands of motorists caught breaking the law during Safe Arrival that’s tens of thousands of people who got on the roads and, through their actions, put countless lives at risk.”
The fatal crashes occurred at:
- Boorowa (two),
- Macquarie Fields,
- Tweed Heads,
- Albion Park,
- Cecil Hills,
- Kembla Grange
Examples of dangerous driving from the last day of OPERATION SAFE ARRIVAL include:
MUSWELLBROOK: About 4:40 pm yesterday (Sunday 3 January 2010), Police followed a vehicle into Dangar Place where the driver was subjected to a random roadside breath test. The 18-year-old male driver allegedly returned a positive reading of 0.125. He was taken to Muswellbrook Police Station where he was charged with mid-range PCA and had his provisional drivers licence suspended.
BATEMANS BAY: About 7.25 pm yesterday, a 48-year-old man was stopped on the Princes Highway for the purpose of a random breath test. At the time, the man was driving a local council work truck. The man allegedly returned a reading of 0.080 and was charged with mid range PCA. Police also suspended his licence. He will appear at Batemans Bay Local Court next month.
CHATHAM: About 5.10 pm yesterday, a 29-year-old male driver was stopped by Police from the Traffic Support Group as part of OPERATION SAFE ARRIVAL. He was asked to produce his licence and he stated to Police “I don’t have one.” When questioned further he allegedly stated he was disqualified till 2027. At the time he was stopped he was driving a Ford Laser which registration expired on the 19 October 2009. The man’s defacto and a baby were in the vehicle at the time of the incident.
MOORELANDS: On Saturday (2 January 2010), a female P2 driver was stopped on the Pacific Highway and inquiries revealed the vehicle and driver were wanted for a fail to pay for fuel at Taree 30 mins earlier. The driver was submitted to a breath test which allegedly returned a positive reading of 0.035. The female was taken to Taree Police station where she was charged with:
- Special Range PCA,
- Resist Arrest.
Police are urging motorists to remain extra vigilant on the roads with increased traffic expected on major thoroughfares across NSW as families travel to and from school holiday destinations.
“Police will maintain a visible presence on the roads and continue to target those motorists intent on doing the wrong thing.” Assistant Commissioner Hartley said.