Saturday, February 26, 2011


Katherine Firkin From: Herald Sun February 26, 2011 12:00AM

Police plan big traffic operations in the next few months. Source: Herald Sun

A POOR start to the year on the state's roads has prompted a series of police blitzes.

Huge traffic operations are planned for the next few months.

Melbourne's northwest suburbs were hit last night. Booze buses and extra police crews were set up in Moonee Ponds, North Fitzroy, Brunswick, Coburg and Northcote.

The tough measures come after more than 200 drivers were caught in an operation in Bulleen on Thursday night. Another 72 drivers were caught speeding on the Geelong Ring Rd in a two-day blitz.

Victoria Police spokesman Marty Beveridge said the operations were triggered by the high road toll so far this year.

"It was disturbing to start the year tracking so poorly in comparison to the previous year," Mr Beveridge said.

"So it's been a concerted effort to tackle road trauma.

"We're putting a lot of resources to this."

Mr Beveridge said the huge result from Operation Mermaid II in Bulleen on Thursday night showed there was still more to be done.

Police issued 212 notices for offences, including drink-driving, unlicensed driving and driving an unregistered or unroadworthy car.

Nine people were charged with immigration offences.

"We're going to continue with these operations until everyone in the community gets the message," he said.

"We remain vigilant in trying to get these road toll figures down. We won't be patting ourselves on the back until the road toll reaches zero."

Members of the Geelong Highway Patrol were shocked with the number of speeding motorists detected on the Geelong Ring Rd.

Operation Hawk caught more than 72 drivers speeding, four of them doing 40km/h over the 100km/h limit. They could lose their licences for six months.

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