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Police roads push for Operation Regal to continue

Operation Regal

Police will continue a heavy winter enforcement presence on Wimmera roads after a busy Operation Regal during the Queen’s Birthday long weekend.
They have warned, especially with the onset of potentially wet, slippery and icy conditions, that they will have little tolerance for motorist complacency and-or complicity.
Police had a profound and highly visible presence on major travelling routes through the region during the weekend operation, with members from Ararat to the South Australian border clocking on for just under 90 shifts.
The shifts equated to 128 officers on the road and 430 patrol hours.
They also led to police issuing infringement notices for 104 offences.
Police Divisional Acting Inspector Brendan Broadbent said the best news from the operation was the absence of serious road trauma or a fatality.
But he was quick to add that 104 offences was too high a figure and in many cases a reflection of what could have been potential disaster.
“The messaging has been out there for years and years but people still want to run the gauntlet,” he said.
Acting Inspector Broadbent said while police were still assessing final details, the predominant offences had been based on speeding, and six were for driving with a blood-alcohol level above .05.

Brendan Broadbent.

Brendan Broadbent.

“We know speed is the number-one cause of road trauma, the number-one contributor to collisions,” he said.
“People must understand this and slow down. Just because the speed limit is 100 kilometres an hour, doesn’t mean you need to sit on 100 and certainly not go over it, which is what many drivers did.
“Driver distraction and fatigue is a major problem, especially when travelling at high speed and over considerable distances.
“And when it comes to alcohol, people are still willing, it seems, to run this gauntlet and drive under the influence. We had 616 breath tests for the duration of the operation and the truth is the chances of getting tested were and continue to be high.”
Acting Inspector Broadbent said 104 offences reflected risky driver behaviour, and this was unacceptable.
“At the end of the day all offences are unacceptable because they all represent risks – that’s why they are offences,” he said.
“Yet many people seem to be prepared to push the limits of driving. “Our focus is about saving lives and reducing the road toll and we won’t waver from the objectives of Operation Regal.”
“The message is that you can expect to see police vehicles on the road and the chances are if you haven’t seen them, the chances are they’ve seen you,” Acting Inspector Broadbent said.
“We won’t be complacent in enforcement and we’re asking motorists to avoid being complacent with their driving.
“We can’t totally enforce our way to better figures.
“It is about appealing to the broader public to moderate driving and take responsibility in supporting us in lowering the road toll.
“There are some people who have that ‘it won’t happen to me’ mentality and don’t realise the risks.
“By not paying attention and travelling too fast they can suddenly be involved in an accident that changes lives forever.”
Acting Inspector Broadbent added modern technology allowed for a variety of distractions in modern motoring.
“We can be drawn into listening to podcasts, conversations and so on,” he said.
“But at the same time, we must make sure we continue to concentrate and ‘actively’ drive our vehicles.
“Concentration while behind the wheel is critical.”

The entire June 12, 2019 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

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Posted on Jun 12 2019

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