July 10, 2024

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Wide Bay Burnett police have issued more than 500 traffic infringement notices (TIN) and breath tested more than 6,000 drivers during Operation Cold Snap, focusing on road safety over the winter school holidays.

From June 22 to July 8, police in the Wide Bay Burnett district saturated our roadways to enforce and encourage safe driving to ensure all road users got to their holiday destination, and home again, safely.

The two-week road safety blitz included roadside breath testing, stationary observation, and overt and covert patrols along highways and major road corridors.

Police issued more than 505 traffic infringement notices (TINs), including five for mobile phone use, five for not wearing a seatbelt and more than 225 for speeding.

Police also conducted more than 6,390 breath tests and found 33 drug drivers and 46 drink drivers.

An example of this occurred on June 26, during patrols of the Old Bruce Highway in Tuchekoi, southbound, when a Highway Patrol Gympie officer recorded a vehicle driving at 142km/h in a 100km/h zone.

After pulling the driver over, police saw the man’s drivers licence was suspended, his car had bald tyres and he blew 0.070 BAC in a roadside breath test.

The 18-year-old Southside man was issued with a TIN for drive defective vehicle (vehicle or component is unsafe) worth $309 and a TIN for exceed speed limit in speed zone by more than 4-km/h, worth $1,780.

The man was also issued with a notice to appear for driving a motor vehicle without a driver licence.

He is due to appear in the Gympie Magistrates Court on July 18.

Wide Bay Burnett District Officer Superintendent Anne Vogler said strengthening road safety in the area is a priority.

“School holidays always bring significant increase in traffic volumes across our roads so Operation Cold Snap aims to address that directly,” Superintendent Vogler said.

“The highlight of the operation for me was to hear about all the conversations police officers were able to have with drivers to create awareness of proven causes of traffic crashes including speed, impaired driving, fatigue, seat belt use, driver distraction and vehicle safety standards.”

Sadly, one person died in a fatal traffic crash in the Wide Bay Burnett district during Operation Cold Snap, bringing the total road fatalities for the district so far this year to 14 lives (as of July 8).

That’s in addition to 56 people injured in 45 injury crashes.

“Our goal is always zero lives lost, so it’s very saddening when we lose someone on our roads”, Superintendent Vogler said.

“Any life lost is a tragedy so we will continue to educate and enforce to strengthen road safety in our community.”

Operation Cold Snap also extended to the beaches, with high visibility patrols conducted on K’gari.

As part of patrols on K’gari, officers focused on education of the Fatal Five and targeting drivers who may be drinking on the barge before they arrive on the island.

A 37-year-old Elanora man recorded a breath test reading of 0.063 BAC and was issued a notice to appear for one count of did drive over the general alcohol limit but not over the middle alcohol limit.

He is due to appear in the Hervey Bay Magistrates Court on July 10.

A 26-year-old Glass House Mountains man received a TIN for exceed speed limit in speed zone by at least 11km/h but not more than 20km/h worth $464.

First Clip: 0:00 – 0:52 26-year-old Glass House Mountains man received a TIN for exceed speed
Second Clip: 0:53 – 1:45 37-year-old Elanora man recorded a breath test reading of 0.063 BAC
Third Clip: 1:46 – 2:30 Man intercepted for RBT on K’gari

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