Police are urging everyone travelling on New South Wales roads to ‘give way to safety’ this festive season, so everyone makes it into the New Year.
Operation Safe Arrival starts at midnight tonight (12.01am on Friday 20 December 2019) and ends 11.59pm on New Year’s Day (Wednesday 1 January 2020).
Double demerit points will be in force throughout the period for speeding, seatbelt, mobile phone and motorcycle helmet offences.
NSW Police officers will also be targeting other poor driver behaviour, including drink-and-drug-driving.
Minister for Police and Emergency Services, David Elliott, wants to see the community enjoy the celebrations but importantly to arrive home safely.
“Traditionally, we see more people on the roads, and out and about visiting family and friends during this busy season. It should be a time that is remembered for all the right reasons, so I urge all road users to obey the road rules and exercise extra caution,” he said.
“Take the appropriate measures to ensure you do not place yourselves or others at risk through poor decision making. With double demerits and police out in force, we want everyone to make a safe arrival to their destination.”
Traffic and Highway Patrol Commander, Assistant Commissioner Michael Corboy, said the main priority for emergency services is getting you home safe and well.
“Our message for the festive season is: ‘give safety right of way’, which means keeping to the speed limit, wearing seatbelts, and helmets for motorcyclists/cyclists, having a Plan B to get home safely if you’re drinking, and focusing on the road always,” Assistant Commissioner Corboy said.
“No reason warrants breaking the law, compromising safety, and endangering the lives of other road users.
“Police will be on the same roads you are this Christmas. Our presence will extend from major roads and highways in cities right through to backroads in rural areas,” Assistant Commissioner Corboy said.
NSW Centre for Road Safety Executive Director, Bernard Carlon said most people do the right thing when they are travelling over the Christmas and New Year period but mistakes and poor choices on the road can have tragic results for many people.
“We know that most people obey the rules and make safe choices when they’re on NSW roads – especially over the busy holiday period where there are lots of people travelling around the state,” Mr Carlon said.
“But so far this year we have lost 339 people, and that is still 339 too many.
“If you’re travelling this holiday season be mindful of your choices on the roads – make sure you’re well rested and have allowed plenty of travel to get to where you need to be without rushing.
“We want everyone to arrive at their destination safely,” Mr Carlon said.