Canberra's holiday road toll zero despite dangerous driving

Canberra's holiday road toll zero despite dangerous driving

A third of the drivers tested for drug driving during the Christmas period returned positive results, police say.

Police were relieved there were no deaths on ACT roads over the holidays despite a high number people caught dangerous driving.

Police relieved at unblemished holiday road toll.

Police relieved at unblemished holiday road toll.

In a wrap up of traffic offences from December 23 to January 2, ACT Policing said 28 out of 88 drivers who were tested for drugs in the period returned positive results, pending further analysis.

On Monday, nine drivers were detected drug-driving.


Police say they also caught 111 people speeding over the double-demerit period, with four drivers going more than 45km/h over the limit.

"Given the number of dangerous drivers police caught over the holiday period, we are certainly relieved that there were no lives lost on Canberra roads," acting officer in charge of traffic, Sergeant Ken Hedges, said.

Drug drivers were of particular concern, the sergeant said.

"Drug driving is downright dangerous, not just to the driver but to everyone on the road around them. It's disappointing for police that these drivers aren't getting the message or taking responsibility.

"The message should be clear to everyone: don't drive while impaired by drugs or alcohol and don't speed. The risk of having a collision is increased by a factor of between 100 and 160 times if drivers combine drugs and alcohol, even with [an] alcohol content under 0.04 per cent. Police actively target this dangerous behaviour and you will be caught, anywhere anytime."

Over the double demerit period, ACT Policing issued 289 traffic infringement notices and 151 cautions for traffic offences. The most common offences were speeding, being unregistered or uninsured, mobile phone use and not wearing seatbelts.

"Alarmingly, over the short period police caught 141 speeding drivers, with four drivers high-range speeding more than 45km/h over the limit," Sergeant Hedges said.

"Police also issued infringements for burnouts, negligent driving, driving with occupants having a body part out the window or door and driving with passengers in an area of the vehicle not designed for passengers. This sort of driving is just irresponsible and we're extremely disappointed to see people driving with such disregard for their safety and the safety of others."

Police say one speeding driver was caught at 120km/h in an 80km/h zone. When stopped, officers discovered he was a disqualified driver in an unregistered car. The driver also returned a positive indication for drugs during a roadside drug test, pending further analysis.

But Sergeant Hedges said there were some positives.

"During the New Year's Eve celebrations police conducted over 800 random roadside breath tests and caught just one driver over the alcohol limit. We're certainly pleased that New Year's revellers got the message and decided to plan a safe way to and from their celebrations."

Most Viewed in National