Easter road blitz a trying time for police

FOURTEEN people have died and hundreds of drivers had been caught drink driving on the nation's roads as police marked the fourth day of a trying Easter roads blitz.

A Tasmanian woman became the latest statistic when she rolled her car near Otago Bay early Sunday morning.

Just hours before, a 25-year-old was killed when his motorbike hit a concrete bridge near Hobart.

On Sunday night there had been two roads deaths in NSW and Victoria, three in South Australia, and one in Western Australia.

The highest number of accidents was recorded in Queensland where four people, including an on-duty police officer, have been killed since Thursday.

While police across all states have praised the general behaviour of drivers over the long weekend, drink driving remained a problem.

In Queensland, more than 200 drivers have been booked.

A 55-year-old Emerald man with a BAC of 0.235%, a 48-year-old Ispwich man with a BAC of 0.217% and a 33-year-old Noosa Heads man with a BAC of 0.172% returned some of the highest readings.

South of the border, 43 drivers tested positive.

The boys in blue also marked their two millionth roadside breath test since drink driving Operation Paciullo was launched in November last year.

The operation was named after George Paciullo, who was the chairman of the parliamentary Staysafe Committee in 1982, and widely recognised as the pioneer of RBT in NSW.

Deputy Commissioner Nick Kaldas performed the honours outside Sydney's town hall and when the driver was cleared, he and his daughter were handed a commemorative plaque.

He said random breath testing remained one of the best strategies in keeping drug and alcohol affected off the state's road and saving lives.

Since 1982 NSW Police have performed more than 85 million RBTs and charged more than 545,000 motorists with drink driving.

It is estimated RBT has saved nearly 7000 lives and prevented tens of thousands injuries.



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