Operation nabs almost 800 drivers

File picture.

File picture.

BENDIGO police charged almost 800 drivers during a seven-month operation targeting speed.

Acting Sergeant Kevyn Hume-Cook of Bendigo Highway Patrol said Operation UNO – under, not over, the limit comprised additional police shifts to the station's usual routine.

Officers recorded a total of 786 offences during the operation, in addition to their regular patrols.

Acting Sergeant Hume-Cook said 642 of the total were speeding offences.

"Twelve of those were travelling more than 25 kilometres over the speed limit, which entailed a loss of licence," he said.

"There were 18 seatbelt offences, 19 unregistered cars and 14 mobile phone offences, as well as three drink drivers and two drug drivers.

"The main focus was speed and we picked up these other things in addition."

Acting Sergeant Hume-Cook said the Transport Accident Commission had funded the operation, allowing police to work extra shifts on their rest days.

"It also means we can get general duties police to work with highway patrol," he said.

"They then take that traffic experience back to their work with the divisional van, so the flow-on effect is really good as well."

The operation began in October and finished last week. It complemented the TAC's Wipe off 5 campaign.

"The whole idea is getting people to drive under the speed limit instead of over," Sergeant Hume-Cook said.

"By reducing speeds we should be reducing the severity of collisions," he said.

Sergeant Hume-Cook said the figures were not as bad as they might seem.

"We’d be checking hundreds of vehicle speeds a day and it's only a very small percentage of drivers on the road who do the wrong thing," he said.

"We do like to thank everybody who does the right thing."

Meanwhile, officers have charged nine drivers with drug-driving since Tuesday, May 6, as part of another targeted campaign funded by the TAC.

"So far this year we’re up to 87 drug-driving offences," Acting Sergeant Hume-Cook said.

"We're definitely out there and looking hard as we continue our fight to keep the road safe for everybody."

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