MOTORISTS could lose their licence in one go this weekend, police warn, as double demerits come into force.
Operation Stay Alert kicked into gear at midnight last night, with extra police preparing to hit the region’s roads.
In the past two weeks two men have been killed on local roads – a 34-year-old man on Tuesday on the outskirts of Tamworth, while another man was killed in a head-on collision near Boggabri on May 28. Meanwhile, three people were airlifted to hospital and another transported by ambulance paramedics after a serious crash near Inverell on Wednesday afternoon.
Highway patrol boss Inspector Jeff Boon said the Western Region was fatality-free during the June long weekend last year, and police were hoping to keep it that way again this weekend.
“There is no room for complacency. Overall it’s good. We’re still tracking a little bit lower than where we were last year, because we look at fatalities and injuries as a combined factor,” he said.
“But there are no second chances.”
Operation Stay Alert is targeting all speeding and safety offences, with double demerits in force as an extra deterrence to ensure people slow down.
Police said there were five factors that contributed to crashes – speeding, impairment by alcohol and/or drugs, fatigue, not using seatbelts and distractions from electronic devices.
Inspector Boon implored drivers to concentrate and take it easy on the roads.
“We’ve had quite a few crashes that have happened where mobile service starts to come back in. All it takes is for wheels to drift to the left or the right just a bit. It’s resulted in a couple of tragic crashes and some very near-misses,” he said.