High visibility policing targeting drivers -Operation Ricko

A man has been charged with high-range drink-driving during a four-day police operation targeting rural road trauma in the New England and Oxley Police Districts.

Operation Ricko is a high-visibility operation targeting speed, restraints, fatigue and drink/drug driving on backroads and small towns throughout the Western Region. The strikeforce deployment was conducted between 7pm on Friday (15 May 2020) and 7pm on Monday (18 May 2020).

Western Region Traffic Tactician Inspector Ben Macfarlane said this style of operation will be ongoing across the region.

“These operations have been ongoing in Western Region and we need to reinforce in motorists’ minds that drink driving and speeding in smaller towns and remote areas is not okay.”

Police conducted 1128 random breath tests, and 45 random drug tests throughout the operation.

The following infringements notices were issued:

  • Speeding offences (224)
  • Seat belt offences (11)
  • Unlicensed drivers (3)
  • Defect notices (12)
  • Heavy vehicle offences (47)
  • Other infringements (167)
  • Positive oral fluid detections (5)
  • PCA (7)

A 32-year-old woman was issued an infringement notice after she was detected travelling at an alleged speed of 100km/h in a 50km/h residential street in Gunnedah. Her licence was suspended for six months. The penalty notice for exceeding the speed limit by more than 45km/h carries a penalty of $2482.

On Friday 15 May 2020, a 27-year-old woman from Kentucky was stopped on the New England Highway south of Glen Innes and was issued a future court attendance notice for drive whilst suspended.

On Saturday 16 May 2020, a 46-year-old woman was arrested and charged with high-range PCA. She was taken to Tamworth Police Station where a subsequent breath analysis returned an alleged reading of 0.180. She will appear at Tamworth Local Court on Monday 27 July 2020.

Highway Patrol Officers throughout Western Region will continue to target rural road trauma, with a view to conduct additional deployments to the Region.

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