South Australian Police has launched its annual festive season road safety operation targeting a zero road toll over the holiday season.
Police and Road Safety Minister Tony Piccolo said Operation Safe Roads will see police focus on the use of seatbelts, speed detection on rural roads, the use of mobile phones or driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
“We all choose to celebrate the holiday period in our own unique way but there is one thing we all share in common – we celebrate it with our loved ones, family and friends,” Mr Piccolo said.
“Don’t ruin the holiday period for any family, SAPol will play their part in trying to keep you safe on the roads this holiday period but you need to do your bit also.”
SAPol data showed the most likely time to be involved in a serious casualty crash is in the days immediately prior to Christmas, especially on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday between the times of 2pm and 10pm. On Christmas Day, the riskiest time on the roads is between midday and 8pm.
Assistant Commissioner Linda Williams said SAPol would be active on roads identified as posing a high crash risk.
“Just one-third of our population lives rurally, yet crash data shows us the risk on those roads is higher than in highly populated areas,” Assistant Commissioner Williams said.
“Using data from the Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure has identified greatest traffic flows, we expect peak flow times to be outward from Adelaide on Friday, 26 and Saturday, 27 December and into Adelaide on Saturday, 27 December and Thursday, 1 January to Friday, 2 January.
“Sunday, 4 January through to Monday, 5 January and Monday, 26 January are also likely to experience high traffic volumes.”
Motor Accident Commission Road Safety General Manager Michael Cornish said MAC’s Drink Drive and Fatigue campaigns would be running over the same period.
“It’s incomprehensible that some motorists are still taking risks such as drink driving, driving without a seatbelt, ignoring speed limits, or driving while using a mobile phone,” Mr Cornish said.
“Fatigue is also a high risk on our roads during the holiday period so MAC reminds drivers to rest 15 minutes every two hours when travelling longer distances. This festive period, we don’t want to see any trauma on our roads. The best gift you can give your family and friends, is to arrive safely.”
Operation Safe Roads runs from Friday, 12 December until Monday, 26 January 2015. SAPol will also be involved with Operation Crossroads, the national road safety initiative coordinated by the Australian New Zealand Policing Advisory Agency (ANZPAA) that runs for 12 days of over Christmas and the New Year.