Police plea for patience on Bendigo roads over Labour Day long weekend

Police are urging motorists to exercise patience behind the wheel this Labour Day weekend, suggesting drivers avoid “ridiculous decisions” to shave a few minutes off a trip.

Extra police resources are being deployed across the region, with all available highway patrol officers in the Campaspe, Bendigo, Central Goldfields and Macedon Ranges regions expected to be on the road. 

As part of a statewide four-day policing push – Operation Arid – police will also be testing for drug and alcohol.

Motorists’ impatience has been a factor in a number of serious crashes recently, said Leading Senior Constable Todd Deary of Bendigo Highway Patrol.

“We want people to take their time and be patient and not to make ridiculous decisions to save themselves a few seconds at the end of the trip,” he said.

With “nose to tail” traffic expected during certain times of the holiday weekend, Leading Senior Constable Deary asked drivers to plan their trips accordingly. 

He said motorists could expect to be breath tested a number of times. 

Road Policing Command Assistant Commissioner Doug Fryer said police will be looking to remove as many drink and drug drivers from the roads as possible.

“Last year we caught 78 drink drivers and 42 drug drivers each day of the operation. This is unacceptable,” he said.

“We know over a long weekend people take the opportunity to get away and with motorists often driving on unfamiliar roads and in new environments any level of impairment is a recipe for disaster.”

Operation Arid will run from 12.01am on  March 9 until 11.59pm March 12.

Last year’s Operation Arid results across Victoria included:

  • 312 drink drivers
  • 168 drug drivers
  • 3208 speeding offences
  • 488 mobile phone offences
  • 309 seat belt offences
  • 99 vehicles impounded
  • 844 unregistered vehicles