Motorists face fines for posting unsafe driving online

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Acting superintendent Donna Hofmeier… “We need the community to stand up and speak out.”

MOTORISTS that have posted footage to social media of them driving dangerously can expect to have a traffic infringement notice sent to them in the next few weeks, warns acting superintendent of ACT road police Donna Hofmeier. 

In some cases, Supt Hofmeier says drivers can even expect to see a police officer at their door.

Her warning comes after police have seen an increase in dangerous driving on Canberra’s roads over the past few weeks.

“In the past week [alone] we’ve had a number of incidents from excessive speed, failing to stop at intersections, failing to stop for police and driving on the wrong side of the road,” Supt Hofmeier says.

“That not only puts the driver at risk but it also puts the road users at high risk.”

In a response to the what police are seeing on the roads, Supt Hofmeier says officers will have a strong focus on dangerous driving throughout May.

But she says they can’t do it alone.

“We need the community to stand up and speak out. Send us your footage, we’re very keen to see it. Report to Crime Stoppers or if it’s happening at the time report it to 131 000,” she says.

“We are going to take a strong approach but we obviously don’t have our eyes and ears everywhere so we need the ACT public to help us. If people think that putting it on social media that we’re not watching, we are watching, and we all have family and friends that tell us about it, too.

“We have some really good laws around impounding vehicles so if we can sustain the evidence we will go and get it.”

Supt Hofmeier, who has been in the role as acting top road cop since February, says she’s amazed by the amount of dangerous driving on the roads at the moment.

“[People driving through] red lights is a big one for us,” she says.

“In the last few years there’s been an average of 5500 a year traffic infringement notice for [running] red lights. The consequences could be that they’re going to kill someone.

“Not themselves but other people that are road users who are doing the right thing. So when you’re coming up to that orange light and you’re thinking, should I go or should I stop? My advice to you is to stop, and do it safely as well.

“Particularly with the road conditions we currently have with the bad weather, I am begging motorists to slow down and drive to the conditions. The last thing that we want to do as police is to attend another fatal accident or another serious accident and to have to knock on another family’s door and destroy their worlds.”

 

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