ACT Policing is joining forces with NSW Police Monaro Local Area Command in support of Operation Crossroads this holiday season, the second in an ongoing series of coordinated road safety initiatives to reduce road trauma across Australia and New Zealand.
One regional focus for police this holiday season is the Kings Highway, as people from Canberra, Queanbeyan and surrounding region generally head to the South Coast. With this increase in traffic volume, police will be active in their patrolling to ensure motorists are driving to the conditions and keeping to the posted speed limit.
The efforts by ACT Policing and the Monaro Command will mirror those of police throughout Australia in a national road safety campaign against dangerous driving coordinated by the national police agency, ANZPAA (Australia New Zealand Police Advisory Agency).
ACT Deputy Chief Police Officer David McLean said that the fundamental tenet of the campaign is that all road trauma is unacceptable, and that anyone who uses the road, whether a driver, motorcyclist, cyclist or pedestrian, has a responsibility in practising safe behaviour.
“Many deaths and road injuries are preventable. Each life saved and serious injury avoided reduces pain and suffering, and achieves important economic savings,” Commander McLean said.
“We want all road users and motorists in particular to modify and moderate their behaviour so that everyone travels safely this Christmas. To reinforce this message, police will be active with our enforcement to target risk-taking behaviour such as speeding and drink-driving.
“This time with Operation Crossroads, the theme is dangerous driving. Human beings are fallible and crashes will occur. However the extent of injury (or deaths) sustained can be reduced when we accept, comply and share the responsibility for using our roads safely,” said Commander McLean.
The widespread use of random breath testing and roadside drug-testing, as well as laser detection of speeding drivers, and close attention to unsafe or inattentive driving will form part of ACT Policing’s road safety strategy during Operation Crossroads.
The first Operations Crossroads was launched during Easter this year, when police rolled up their sleeves and donated their blood to raise awareness of road trauma and injuries. Across Australia over the Easter break, there were 20 road-related fatalities recorded, with zero in the Northern Territory and the ACT.
Deputy Chief Police Officer, David McLean said he hoped to see the same result for the ACT this Christmas holiday.
“We have had six people die on our roads this year. As far as I am concerned, that is six too many,” he said.
Operation Crossroads begins on Friday, December 23 and will continue until Tuesday, January 3.
Double demerits are effective from the first instance on Friday, December 23, 2011 until midnight Monday, January 2, 2012.