Still not listening

January 11, 2017

Police are disappointed with the number of drug and alcohol-affected drivers caught during Operation Roadwise.

Drivers in the Shepparton area continued to drive while under the influence of alcohol and drugs during the Christmas and new year period, despite numerous warnings.

Operation Roadwise, a 24-day statewide police campaign targeting dangerous drivers in the hopes of driving the state road death toll towards zero, ended Sunday.

Statistics released by Victoria Police showed in the Shepparton service area there were 359 driving offences recorded during the operation, including 19 drink drivers and nine drug drivers.

There were 11 disqualified and 33 unlicensed drivers caught driving and 119 speed-related offences.

Shepparton Highway Patrol Acting Sergeant Glenn Fitzgerald said in the Shepparton area compliance was shown in relation to speeding offences.

‘‘The speed figures were down from last year, that was the good news,’’ Sgt Fitzgerald said.

Sgt Fitzgerald said police were disappointed in people’s drink driving choices, despite heeding advice to slow down.

‘‘The negative (news) is the drink drivers and the drug-affected drivers,’’ he said.

Sgt Fitzgerald said of the drink drivers caught, five were caught on Christmas Day and, of the 10 drug drivers caught, six were caught shortly after New Year’s Day.

‘‘The message seems to be getting across for speed but that’s only one element for driving, it’s drink driving and drug driving that’s our big element at the moment,’’ he said.

Other Operation Roadwise figures released by Victoria Police showed in the Shepparton service area there were 12 instances of drivers disobeying signs and signals, 11 seat belt offences and one mobile phone offence.

There were 56 unregistered vehicles caught in the service area and three vehicles were impounded.

Fifteen people lost their lives on Victorian roads during the operation, up from 11 last year.

The overall road death toll for last year was 292.

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