Police label holiday driving behaviour as ‘concerning’
Emergency services say they have been “quite concerned” by driver behaviour of the Christmas holiday period.
At a press conference at Withcott on Friday, Acting Inspector Regan Draheim said more than 800 traffic infringement notices were issued since Christmas Eve, of which more than half were for speeding.
Acting Inspector Draheim said police also conducted over 6500 RBTs, which detected 60 drink drivers.
Another 60 drivers were also detected under the influence of drugs, which Acting Inspector Draheim said was “also quite concerning”.
Acting Inspector Draheim told the Gatton Star that a particular hotspot for poor driving behaviour in the Lockyer Valley continued to be the stretch of the Warrego Highway between Hatton Vale and Plainland.
He said motorists continue to disobey the speed limits across that part of the highway.
Acting Inspector Draheim revealed that restraint had been a major contributing factor to road fatalities last year, and reminded drivers and passengers to always put their seatbelts on when they are inside their car.
He also highlighted the large toll on emergency services that have to attend horrific accidents, as well as the families of those involved and the community.
“Families would rather see someone arrive late than not at all,” Acting Inspector Draheim said.
Superintendent Glen Maule from Queensland Ambulance Service said paramedics had seen an increase in their workloads during the last couple of weeks.
He said speed and fatigue had been contributing factors at many accidents along rural roads.
Superintendent Maule reminded motorists to take “an appropriate break” after a certain amount of time when travelling long distances.
Acting Superintendent Ross Mutzelburg from the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services said firies often saw the worst when they were called to accidents of people trapped in vehicles.
He said the faster the speed that an accident occurred at, the more damage there is to the vehicles and the harder it is to get people out.
“This affects their chances of recovery”, if they are not already deceased, Mr Mutzelburg said.
Moving into the Australia Day weekend and back to school week, Acting Inspector Draheim said there would be a “continued focus” on the Fatal Five.
The Fatal Five includes speeding, drink and drug driving, restraint, fatigue and distraction.
He said there would be a strong police presence and enforcement of school zones and reminded parents dropping off kids at school to “do the right thing”.
Superintendent Maule said some children would be riding bikes to school, many for their first time, and reminded parents to make sure kids wore helmets and were aware of the route to and from school.
More stories by Hugh Suffell.