Easter weekend double demerits looming as police target dangerous driving

STATE-WIDE OPERATION: Double demerits come into force from Thursday morning onward, ahead of the Easter break. Photo: PHIL BLATCH
STATE-WIDE OPERATION: Double demerits come into force from Thursday morning onward, ahead of the Easter break. Photo: PHIL BLATCH

Police will be vigilantly targeting 'high-risk behaviour' on NSW roads over the Easter break as double demerits for speeding, seatbelt, mobile phone and motorcycle helmet offences come into force from Thursday onward.

Easter Operation 2021 begins at 12.01am on Thursday morning and runs through the entire weekend with 'the four Ds - drink, drug, dangerous and distracted driving' also in police crosshairs across the state.

Last year's Easter weekend was affected by COVID-19 so Traffic and Highway Patrol Commander, Assistant Commissioner Karen Webb said she expects roads to be far busier this year, as people take advantage of relaxed restrictions.

Many communities throughout the state are still dealing with the effects of devastating flooding and it is important nobody adds to the heartache.

David Elliot, NSW Minister for Police and Emergency Services

"With COVID19 restricting travel last Easter, we expect people to take full advantage of being able to holiday across NSW and interstate this year," she said.

"We want you to enjoy our beautiful state but please drive carefully, particularly where roads may be unfamiliar.

"At the heart of our policing is always public safety. We want all of you to arrive at your destination and enjoy Easter with loved ones."

IN OTHER NEWS:

She said police are encouraging motorists to look out for each other on the roads amid the state-wide operation, adding there is no excuse for the behaviours they will target.

David Elliot, NSW Minister for Police and Emergency Services, reiterated the latter point, particularly considering the devastation the state has experience recently through floods and extreme weather.

"Many communities throughout the state are still dealing with the effects of devastating flooding and it is important nobody adds to the heartache," Mr Elliott said.

"Double-demerit points are in force for a reason and police officers will be stationed across NSW targeting high-risk behaviour."

Minister for Transport and Roads, Andrew Constance, is urging drivers to slow down this weekend and plan trips in advance.

"Almost half of all fatalities on our roads last year involved excessive speeding, and each one of those deaths was preventable," Mr Constance said.

"Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to travel, don't speed, drive to the conditions, wear your seatbelt, avoid distractions, make sure you're well rested and if you've been drinking or have taken drugs, don't drive."

Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole, said anyone travelling regionally should ensure they plan their trip well in advance and drive to the conditions.

"A large-scale clean-up and recovery operation is underway around the state, but especially in regional NSW where many major roads remain closed or effected by flood damage.

"Don't risk yours or your passenger's safety when you're travelling this long weekend, factor in the delays and alternative routes you may need to take due to the flood damage and please be patient."

Motorists are advised to plan their trip in advance using Live Traffic NSW or by visiting the SES website.

This story Double demerits loom as police target dangerous driving over Easter weekend first appeared on Central Western Daily.