Police blitz holiday drivers

BENDIGO police detected more than 530 driving offences in the past two weeks as part of a police blitz targeting holiday drivers. 

Highway Patrol Senior Sergeant Paul Gardiner said Operation Break Up, which ran from December 9 until December 22, sought to remind drivers that police would be present throughout the summer period. 

"During summer there are more people on the roads," he said. 

"People are driving to visit families and going on holiday. 

"Our holiday message is simple - stay alert, stay sober, stay within the speed limit, stay awake and most importantly, stay alive.

Senior Sergeant Gardiner said Bendigo police conducted 5790 random breath tests as part of the operation. 

"We detected 10 drivers who were above the legal blood alcohol limit," he said. 

"That means one driver in every 579 who were breath tested blew above .05. 

"That figure is better than the state average, which was one in every 515 drivers.

"But it's still disappointing. " 

Bendigo police caught 239 people speeding, 26 drivers using their mobile phone, 40 unregistered cars, 17 people not wearing seat belts, 31 people driving without a licence and more than 100 other offences. 

Police impounded four cars. 

The operation formed part of the Summer Stay campaign run by Victoria Police. 

Operation Break Up was followed by Operation Crossroads, which launched on Monday and will continue until January 3. 

The launch of Operation Crossroads also marked the start of the official holiday road toll period. 

Chief Commissioner Ken Lay said Victoria Police would be out in force during this period detecting and removing drivers who engaged in risky behaviour. 

“Everyone has the right to travel on the roads safely, and those drivers who believe that it’s acceptable to break speed limits in order to get where they want to go just a few minutes sooner are kidding themselves,” he said.

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