Police blitz targets the west

(Joe Mastroia)

Police have detected more than 150 offences during a major road safety operation across Victoria’s west including greater Geelong.

Operation West Connect saw highway patrol units enforcing across major arterial roads in Western Victoria targeting high-risk driving behaviour.

It comes as 104 lives have been lost on the state’s roads so far this year, with 28 of those occurring on roads in Western Victoria.

Operation West Connect is an ongoing operation focused on detecting speeding, distracted and impaired drivers.

In greater Geelong, police recorded one drug driving offence, 24 for speeding, one for disobeying a traffic sign, one seatbelt offence, two mobile phone offences, three other traffic offences, one disqualified/suspended driver and one heavy vehicle offence.

Police conducted 45 breath tests, eight drug tests and intercepted five heavy vehicles during the operation.

Operation West Connect will continue across Western Victoria – encompassing major arterial roads from Geelong, Bacchus Marsh, Bendigo and Echuca as far west as the SA border, and from the Surf Coast, Warrnambool and Portland as far north as the NSW border.

“Speeding on regional roads continues to be a major contributing factor to serious injury and fatal collisions, and yet it’s evident so many motorists are not heeding the warnings as we are continuing to detect far too many people speeding,” Western Region Road Policing Inspector Justine Ryan said.

“We need drivers to slow down and keep to the speed limits, particularly on regional roads – they are in place to keep all road users safe.

“Operation West Connect is an ongoing road policing initiative and motorists should expect to see police out enforcing across major arterials in Western Victoria.

“We’re doing everything we can to drive down road trauma in the state’s west”.