Penrith named one of state’s drink driving hotspots

Random Breath Testing will be commonplace over the holidays.
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Penrith has been named as one of the state’s drink driving hotspots, with 339 motorists caught over the limit this year.

The Bust the Boozers report, which was released by the NRMA last week, ranked Local Government Areas by the highest recorded numbers of drivers who were caught drink-driving.

The Central Coast topped the list with 919, followed by Sydney CBD with 579, Blacktown with 567, the Northern Beaches with 455, Penrith with 339 and Canterbury-Bankstown with 249.

The NRMA is warning motorists against drink driving, reminding them of the risks this festive season.

NRMA spokesperson Peter Khoury is calling for an increase in Random Breath Testing (RBT), saying it is the “ultimate deterrent” to drink driving.

“There have been 70 more deaths since this time last year which represents a 27 per cent increase to the Road Toll, so we are again reminding drivers to keep the car at home if you’re attending work Christmas parties and other social gatherings and plan on drinking,” he said.

“We want the public to play its part while at the same time reiterating our call to the NSW Government to significantly increase the number of RBTs across the state.

“We need a particular focus on regional communities where road fatalities are significantly higher and the temptation to drink and drive can be greater due to a lack of alternative transport options, especially late at night.”

Over the holiday period, Greater Western Sydney Highway Patrol and Nepean Police Area Command will be conducting Random Breath Tests and Random Drug Testing

Traffic Inspector Steve Atherton told the Weekender that motorists can expect to see police active in the local area, performing vehicle stops and ensuring drivers are not impaired.

“Police acknowledge that the festive season will involve people indulging in drinking alcohol, but motorists are reminded to consider a Plan B if they are driving,” he said.

“Do not put yourself, your passengers and other people at risk by mixing alcohol and driving this holiday period. Consider alternative transport modes including public transport, rideshare vehicles and taxis or nominating a designated driver.

“Local Police know the local roads so rest assured that Police will be patrolling the back streets in addition to the main arterial roads. Police work 24/7 so you can be stopped at any time and anywhere.”

Makayla Muscat

Formerly with the ABC, Makayla is a graduate of Western Sydney University. She covers a variety of news topics for the Weekender, including courts.

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