Local News

Upper Hunter police find no joy in giving you a ticket, they just want you to get home safe

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Upper Hunter police find no joy in giving you a ticket, they just want you to get home safely this long weekend. 

NSW Police have launched Operation Slow Down which starts at 12.01am on Friday 4 October 2019 and concludes at 11.59pm on Monday 7 October 2019.

Double demerits will be in force throughout the period for speeding, seatbelt, mobile phone and motorcycle helmet offences.

During the 2018 Operation Slow Down period, five lives were lost in four fatal crashes on NSW roads.

Hunter Valley Police District (HVPD) Superintendent Chad Gillies said police will be on the main arterial roads and through the back roads as well.

"It's no surprise that there will be a high police presence and not only from this weekend but across the school holidays."

"It's really important that the old messages are adhered to, I know we say this every time but I would really love to get through a long weekend without any serious injuries or collisions and of course no fatal motor vehicle accidents," he said.

"The police do not find joy out of handing out tickets."

"We would much rather get through this weekend fatality-free, serious injury-free and have low tickets than having to give out a thousand tickets and attend a number of serious accidents because what we do know as well in country towns serious accidents can tear apart a country town, often they are locals that are involved and the impact on emergency services workers and the wider community is something you can't put a measure on so please adhere to the advice, drive safely and responsibly and have a great weekend," said Superintendent Gillies. 

"What we do know is a lot of people involved in accidents are locals, so we're going to get a lot of people coming through our area up the New England Highway, etc, that aren't too familiar with our conditions and my concern is that will add to the risk over the long weekend," he added.

"When you throw in the double demerits, the potential impact on loss of license, fines for people are huge and in an area like the Upper Hutner people rely on their licenses just to function in normal life and if you lose that license that's going to have a huge impact on you, your family and your livelihood."

"You don't have to be driving too fast on country roads to be driving unsafely, you need to drive to those conditions."

"So please exhibit really good driver behaviour, because it's not just what impacts on you as a driver, you are also at the whim of other people on the road so we have a collective responsibility to share those roads responsibly," concluded Superintendent Gillies. 

Image credit: Grant Broadcasters/Jessica Rouse