Drink-drivers in police officers' sights

EXPECT to see more police cars on the road this weekend – that’s the warning from officers as they trawl local hotspots in an effort to catch drink-drivers.

Already local officers have conducted 500 more breath tests in one night alone than last year’s Operation Drink Drive.

The weekend-long operation has every driver in its sights, following a spike in drink-driving figures not only locally but across the state.

Western Region traffic commander Inspector Jeff Boon said anyone who got behind the wheel after too many drinks was dicing with death.

“It happens time after time after time,” he said.

“These people impose their own death sentence.”

But he warned it wasn’t just drink-drivers’ lives at risk, but those of others on the road too.

“We’ve seen more than 60 fatalities since January 1, so people need to visualise that,” Inspector Boon said.

“That’s 60 families that are doing without loved ones. The devastating impact these crashes have is something people need to remember.”

Police have pulled out all the stops and even cancelled officer rest days to hit the roads.

The operation is a joint initiative between police, Transport NSW and the Centre for Road Safety.

“The extra funding for the operation comes from revenue which is collected from speed cameras and is poured straight back into speed-enforcement resources,” Inspector Boon said.

“Alcohol is certainly a big problem out here and in some of the more remote areas.

“Even at the limit of 0.05 your chance of having a crash has doubled ... the chances of having a crash in the high-range readings increases by 25-fold.”

But police warn the heavy police presence won’t end tomorrow – rather, Operation Saturation kicks into gear.

The month-long campaign targets speeding and aims to reduce incidences of road trauma and try to bring down the road toll.

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