SHOCKING: Tweed Byron Local Area Command Superintendent David Roptell and Senior Sergeant Chad George are disappointed that one in 55 people breathylised at the weekend tested positive to alcohol. Picture: Jodie Callcott.
SHOCKING: Tweed Byron Local Area Command Superintendent David Roptell and Senior Sergeant Chad George are disappointed that one in 55 people breathylised at the weekend tested positive to alcohol. Picture: Jodie Callcott.

Police plea reveals Tweed’s shameful statistics

DRIVERS on the Far North Coast have topped the state but it's nothing to be proud of.

The Tweed and Byron shires are the worst in the state for drink driving according to Tweed Byron Local Area Command Superintendent David Roptell.

Officers from the Tweed-Byron Police District reported one person in every 55 tested was driving with a higher than the legal limit during a 72-hour operation last week.

Operation Drink Drive 1 produced alarming results including a Banora Point man who was allegedly caught driving drunk with a blood alcohol reading of 0.152.

To add to concerns of police, they allege the man had his four-year-old child in the car.

The 42-year-old man was stopped by police on Saturday night on the Pacific Highway at Tweed Heads about 10pm on Saturday.

Supt Roptell said from the 2740 roadside breath tests, 50 people were caught drink driving.

"We want to put the message out there that while we achieved good results by getting these people off the road, it's concerning people are still not getting the message," Supt Roptell said.

"If you drink, don't get behind the wheel and drive."

Supt Roptell said local police were introducing their own saturation-style operations including ramping up their presence around licensed premises.

The police action comes as a statewide response to drink driving following the tragic death of four children in Sydney this month.

"We're refocusing and really making it a priority in identifying drink driving on our roads," he said.

"We are all aware in each area that there are some really concerning situations with drink driving but let me say we are out there in force to detect them."

During a similar operation in 2016, police from the Tweed-Byron Local Area Command charged 19 drink drivers and caught 86 drivers who tested positive to drugs.

In 2017, the Tweed was included in a list of worst drink driving suburbs in NSW.

Senior Sergeant Chad George said the Tweed had the highest drink driving detection rate in the state in 2019.

He said the region also topped the list for the highest record of speed and alcohol related accidents.


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