Operation Crossroads, a national initiative to reduce road trauma across Australian and New Zealand, was launched ahead of the Easter long weekend today by ACT Policing.
Traffic Superintendent Mark Colbran said road collisions kill on average 1,500 people every year in Australia and on average 400 a year in New Zealand. Six people have already died on ACT roads this year alone.
“It is unacceptable that deaths and injuries occur at all on our roads. On average, over the past five years, Canberrans have been involved in around 593 road crashes per year resulting in serious injury”.
“Road trauma is a major cause of premature death, especially among younger age groups. The fatal five (drink driving, speeding, seat belts, driver distraction and fatigue) are still a major cause of road deaths, and are preventable” he said.
As part of Operation Crossroads, police will be rolling up their sleeves and donating blood to raise awareness of the trauma and injuries over the traditionally busy Easter period.
More than 27,000 blood donations are needed each week to treat people in need. Police are giving their blood to make sure that people think about the impact of their actions on friends, families and others while travelling on our roads.
“Our police officers give their time and effort in attempting to keep our roads safe each day. As part of Operation Crossroads, officers will also be giving blood. Our best expectations will be that you won’t need us or our blood over Easter,” Superintendent Colbran said.
Operation Crossroads commences Friday, April 22 and will continue until the end of the Easter period (Tuesday, April 26). Targeting recidivist traffic offenders, known hotspots and the use of static and mobile random breath testing as well as all available traffic patrols will form part of ACT Policing’s road safety approach to Operation Crossroads.
This Easter’s Operation Crossroads is the first of an ongoing series of coordinated road safety initiatives across Australia.