Barton Blitz catches nearly a quarter of drivers speeding

BLITZ: The 2017 Barton Blitz has shown that nearly a quarter of drivers so far have been driving faster than the speed limit on the Barton Highway. Photo: Supplied.
BLITZ: The 2017 Barton Blitz has shown that nearly a quarter of drivers so far have been driving faster than the speed limit on the Barton Highway. Photo: Supplied.

Statistics from the 2017 Barton Blitz campaign released on Wednesday, February 15 show that up to 21% of drivers have been driving in excess of the 100km/h speed limit, with police booking a driver at 132 km/h. The major finding was published four days before the end of the campaign.

Data collected through speed checking devices show that on average 14% of drivers are exceeding the Highway’s speed limit, placing themselves and drivers around them at an increased risk.

Now in its seventh year, the annual Barton Blitz—coordinated by Yass Valley Council and Yass Police as part of the Local Government Road Safety Program—aims to decrease road-related injuries and crashes along the notoriously congested Barton Highway. It aims to do so by changing driver behaviour through coordinated road-safety messages and an increased police presence.

Yass Valley Council’s road-safety officer Derryth Nash said the campaign is an educational and awareness program.

“The Barton Blitz campaign isn’t about catching people; we are aiming to change driver thinking and behaviour,” Nash said.

“We all lead busy lives and have places we need to be but taking risks on the road puts yourself or drivers around you in danger and it is not ok,” he said.

Local Yass Police sergeant Stephen Pidgeon agreed. “Police constantly see drivers putting themselves and those around them in dangerous driving situations,” Mr Pidgeon said.

“Drivers are reminded that they can report unsafe driver behaviour to Yass Police Station, so that we can work together as a community to tackle this issue.”

The annual Barton Blitz campaign will conclude on Sunday, February 19.