Blitz nets drink-drivers while cars queue up

Northbound drivers on the Princes Highway were caught up in queues up to six kilometres long on Monday. Picture: GREG TOTMAN
Northbound drivers on the Princes Highway were caught up in queues up to six kilometres long on Monday. Picture: GREG TOTMAN

A 56-year-old Bexley man who lost control of his car and smashed into a concrete barrier in Cringila on Monday morning was more than three times the legal alcohol limit, police say.

The crash happened at 1am on Five Islands Road, and the man returned a blood-alcohol reading of 0.171.

It was just one of several cases of drink-driving police uncovered in the Illawarra during Operation Stay Alert, run to coincide with the Queen's Birthday long weekend.

About 10.30pm on Saturday, police observed a 28-year-old man running a red light on the corner of New Lake Entrance Road and Government Road, Oak Flats.

He was stopped and given a breath test. He returned a high-range blood-alcohol reading of 0.168.

Meantime, a 21-year-old man from Woonona who was driving with a suspended licence was caught speeding on Memorial Drive at 11pm on Sunday with a blood-alcohol level of 0.133.

Police conducted more than 8100 breath tests in the Lake Illawarra and Wollongong police districts during the operation, which ran from midnight Thursday to midnight Monday.

As of lunchtime Monday, police had also detected 40 speeding infringements, eight seatbelt compliance infringements and 115 "other" infringements.

About 3pm on Monday, emergency services were called to a rolled-vehicle accident, just south of Bulli Pass on the Princes Highway. No-one was injured.

Many motorists were caught in major traffic jams as they tried to return home on Monday.

Queues up to six kilometres tied up northbound drivers near Berry on the Princes Highway.

Similar delays were experienced at Figtree, Albion Park and south of Nowra at Falls Creek.

South Coast highway patrol supervisor Senior Sergeant Andrew Palmowski said that although many motorists were doing the right thing, there were still too many "selfish" drivers on the road.

"Unfortunately for those who choose to speed and drink and drive, putting themselves and others at risk, they're the reason why police go out there day in day out and take them off the road," he said.

"For motorists out there doing the right thing, thank you. They consider the safety of their passengers and themselves to be important."


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