Motorists' South Coast highway headache

Holidaymakers heading south on the Princes Highway had another frustrating day behind the wheel yesterday with traffic jams at Albion Park Rail, Kiama, Berry and Milton.

Those heading north didn't escape either, with a queue in the northbound lane at Berry that stretched back four kilometres during its afternoon peak.

Yet again, the worst traffic was southbound on the Kiama bends.

The traffic there started getting heavy by mid-morning and built steadily through the day.

At 11am, the southbound queue was three kilometres long, adding at least 10 minutes to travel times.

By 12.50pm, it had stretched to four kilometres and delays of at least 20 minutes.

At 3.30pm, it was seven kilometres long and taking around 40 minutes to negotiate.

Once they'd escaped the Kiama bends, long-suffering motorists were faced with a one-and-a-half-kilometre jam at Berry and a three-kilometre snarl at Milton, each adding at least another 10 minutes to travel times.

The southbound Berry queue started at 12.20pm and travellers were still experiencing lengthy delays in the early evening.

At Milton, traffic started getting heavy at 12.30pm, peaked at 2.50pm and was still causing delays at 4.30pm.

The northbound Berry jam began about 12.30pm, peaked from 1.50 to 2.50pm, and had eased off by late afternoon.

The news wasn't all bad, with police reporting there were no deaths on NSW roads on New Year's Day.

While they were pleased with the zero-fatality count, they were concerned by the number of motorists breaking the law.

In the 24 hours to midnight on January 1, police performed 48,576 random breath tests, resulting in 102 drink-driving charges.

Officers also issued 656 infringement notices for speeding, and 1308 for other traffic offences, such as not wearing a seatbelt or using a mobile phone while driving.

Over that period a total of 24 people were injured in 76 major crashes.

"The vast majority of drivers are doing the right thing, but we continue to be disappointed and baffled by those who speed, drink and drive, and refuse to wear a seatbelt," NSW Police Traffic and Highway Patrol Commander John Hartley said.

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