902 drivers caught using mobile
phones in 24-hour police blitz
POLICE have caught more than 1500 motorists breaking the road rules in a 24-hour crackdown on traffic offences across the state – 902 of them booked for using mobile phones while driving.
Officers attached to Operation Compliance yesterday (Wednesday) targeted motorists using mobile phones and law-breaking provisional and learner drivers.
Traffic and Highway Patrol Operations Commander, Superintendent Stuart Smith, says 902 motorists were booked for using hand-held mobile phones,
580 P1 and P2 licence holders were issued traffic infringement notices, while 64 learner drivers also received fines.
Superintendent Stuart Smith has expressed concern at the large number of novice drivers caught in the crackdown.
“The fact 644 provisional and learner drivers have been caught breaking the law in just 24 hours is particularly disappointing,” he says.
“P-platers are over-represented in fatal collisions, with 93 provisional drivers losing their lives on New South Wales roads in 2011.
“Not surprisingly, P-platers are also over-represented in traffic infringements. Hopefully, the provisional drivers we caught breaking the law yesterday learn their lesson and start to obey the road rules,” Superintendent Smith says.
Among yesterday’s examples of poor driver behaviour were:
A 28-year-old P-plater observed by police allegedly drinking a bottle of beer while driving at Armidale about 9am yesterday.
Police stopped the man for a roadside breath test which returned a positive reading, then taken to Armidale Police Station for a breath analysis which returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.087.
He was charged with drink-driving and other traffic offences.
A 25-year old man detected about 4:30pm riding a motor scooter in Sydney’s Petersham while allegedly watching a video on his mobile phone.
He was intercepted by police and booked for using a hand-held mobile phone while riding, which carries a fine of $265 and three demerit points.
An 18-year-old male P-plater from Coffs Harbour, on the North Coast, driving in a Toyota Camry which was seen to allegedly drift across the road into the path of an oncoming Ford Laser, driven by a 56-year-old female, about 6:55pm.
The impact of the crash tore off their front off-side wheels.
While neither driver was injured, they were taken to hospital for examinations. Police will allege the Toyota driver was using his mobile phone at the time of the impact.
The P-plater was booked for not keeping left, and using a mobile phone while driving.