News

Safety laws target drivers

By Cobram Courier

Drug drivers and motorists who use their mobile phones are being targeted as part of the NSW Government’s road safety reforms.

The Road Transport Legislation Amendment (Road Safety) Bill 2018 extends powers relating to roadside oral testing for cocaine, increases penalties for driving under the influence and enables camera-based enforcement of illegal mobile phone use.

Member for Murray Austin Evans said that the reforms would help achieve the government’s road safety goals as part of the Road Safety Plan 2021.

‘‘NSW is the first jurisdiction in Australia to introduce legislation to enable automated camera enforcement of mobile phones, showing this government’s ongoing commitment to road safety as technology and societal trends change,’’ Mr Evans said.

Last year 74 people lost their lives in crashes where a driver or rider had an illicit drug in their system.

Inspector Paul Huggett from the Murray River Police District said he would support the amendment.

‘‘I’d support any initiative to remove intoxicated drivers from our roads (drugs and/or alcohol). We as a community have to send the message that this behaviour is not acceptable and will not be tolerated,’’ he said.

‘‘Our family and friends drive on these roads and deserve to do so without the risks that an impaired driver presents.

‘‘All impaired drivers will continue to be targeted not only in the western sectors of the Murray River Police District, but across the district as a whole.’’