80 drink drivers arrested in two days

In just two days, 80 people across Queensland have been arrested for alleged drink driving.

More than 5500 random breath tests were conducted in that time, with the highest reading allegedly being more than four times the legal limit.

A 49-year-old man allegedly returned a blood alcohol reading of 0.230 when tested in a residential area in Nambour — a town in the Sunshine Coast region — on Wednesday.

In addition to the drink drivers, police also detected 29 drug drivers since midnight on December 23 as part of a Christmas crackdown on drivers putting others at risk on the roads.

Traffic operations will continue over the festive season and police urge people not to drink then get behind the wheel.

The Christmas Road Safety Campaign began on December 9.

Qld police released video footage showing some of the arrests.

It shows officers pulling over a white ute and talking to the driver, followed by a breath test being undertaken.

Police are heard telling the person to “blow” into the device then “stop”.

‘This test indicates to me you’re over the limit,” the officer said.

The footage also shows a woman stepping into the back of a police van.

Queensland’s road toll is the highest it’s been in years, with about more than 50 deaths recorded compared to last year.

It was only last week four people died on Qld roads in 48 hours.

The state’s road toll stands at 269 in 2020, surpassing yearly totals for the past four years.

It reached 251 in 2016, then there were 247 recorded deaths in 2017 and 245 in 2018 before recording 217 last year – the lowest in decades.

Meanwhile, in NSW, drivers are being urged to celebrate the festive season safely on roads, with the threat of losing double demerit points if road users are caught doing wrong.

On the first day of a statewide road safety operation, one person had died, 833 infringements were given and there were 57 major crashes.

There were 20,329 breath tests conducted with 23 Prescribed Concentration of Alcohol (PCA) charges laid.

One incident involved a 43-year-old Menai man who was fined for allegedly speeding more than 45km/h over the limit and had his licence suspended.

Another involved a 25-year-old man from Cabramatta who allegedly returned a 0.175 blood alcohol reading after his Mitsubishi van lost control and left the roadway, crashing on its side.

He is due to appear at Cootamundra Local Court on February 1, 2021 and had his license suspended.

The road safety operation began on Christmas Eve and will continue through to January 3.

Police will be targeting people who speed, don’t wear a seatbelt, use their mobile phone, and commit motorcycle helmet offences.

Preventing drink, drug, dangerous and distracted driving will also be a focus.

Traffic and Highway Patrol Commander, Assistant Commissioner Karen Webb, said the holiday operation started with one life already lost on NSW roads.

“We hope to see drivers taking care while visiting loved ones during the festive season, as police continue to patrol all roads throughout the operation,” she said.

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