NSW police launched two major road safety campaigns this week, Operation Drink Drive and Operation Saturation.
Operation Drink Drive 1 commenced on Thursday and runs until midnight on Saturday, 22 February. As the name implies, it is aimed at drink driving.
Operation Saturation is a blitz on speeding which commences immediately after Operation Drink Drive 1 and runs for one month.
So far, 2014 has been a bad year for road trauma. According to the NSW Police Force press release, in the first 48 days of 2014, 57 people lost their lives on NSW roads, a 50% increase over the same period last year during which 38 people lost their lives. According to the press release alcohol was a major factor in about one in seven crashes involving a fatality.
NSW Police Deputy Commissioner – Specialist Operations, Catherine Burn makes it clear that whilst random breath testing has had a major impact on the number of road deaths, the task is ongoing. She said “In the year before we introduced RBT in NSW, the road toll was almost 1,300, compared to last years record low of 339. Nevertheless, many people just don’t seem to be getting the message about the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol. In 2013, we charged about 22,000 people with drink-driving offences”.
Police will conduct a high number of random breath tests this weekend. We can also expect to see a high police profile during the blitz on speeding.