Number of drivers caught drink driving across Kings Birthday long weekend

The Northern police region, which takes in the Hunter, was the deadliest over the King’s Birthday long weekend, following the tragic bus crash at Greta which claimed ten lives.

Across that northern region during the double demerits period from Thursday night to Monday evening, police conducted 31,703 breath tests with 76 drivers found to be behind the wheel under the influence, 1,175 drivers were caught speeding and there were 58 major crashes with 10 fatalities.

The operation targeted the major factors contributing to road trauma – excessive speed, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, fatigue, non-wearing of seatbelts and helmets, and mobile phone use.

On Sunday, the bus rollover at Greta resulted in the deaths of 10 passengers. The 58-year-old bus driver was charged and appeared at Cessnock Local Court yersterday, where he was granted conditional bail to appear before Newcastle Local Court on Wednesday 9 August 2023.

Aside from the multi-agency response to Sunday’s crash at Greta, police responded to four other fatal crashes, including the death of a woman at Molong on Friday and a motorcyclist at Glebe on Saturday. On Sunday a male driver died after a single vehicle crash at Mount Victoria and a female pedestrian at a crash in Roseville.

Commander of Traffic and Highway Patrol Command, Acting Assistant Commissioner David Waddell, said the events at Greta over the weekend have been absolutely tragic.

“While the driver has been charged investigations are still ongoing, Acting Assistant Commissioner David Waddell, said.

“The long weekend operation may be over, but we will continue to target inappropriate driving”.

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