A man found hiding in the bushes after an alleged police pursuit in Guyra is just one of many who were caught marring the festive season with atrocious behaviour on New England roads.
The "significant number of dangerous driving incidents" during Operation Christmas/New Year 2021 kept New England police on their toes, and has prompted them to implore the community to "think of others" on the road.
During the operation in the New England, an Orange man was denied bail at Armidale Local Court charged with police pursuit, common assault (DV), driving whilst disqualified and negligent driving.
At about 10am on Tuesday December 28, New England Highway Patrol officers in Guyra saw a white Ford Ranger allegedly speeding on Falconer Street.
While a pursuit began, police said they terminated the chase a short time later because of the "manner of driving".
Just over an hour later, police responded to reports of a car crash on Link Road in Armidale, where a vehicle had crashed and rolled.
The driver, who was identified as a 33-year-old Orange man, was found hiding in bushes nearby.
He was charged and appeared at Armidale Local Court on Wednesday December 29, where he was formally refused bail. He is set to reappear at Tamworth Local Court on Monday January 10.
Operation Christmas/New Year 2021 statistics
Starting at 12.01am on Christmas Eve and finishing up at 11.59pm on Monday, the police operation saw 8414 speed infringements dolled out, 580 drink-driving charges laid, 624 major crashes attended, and 230,366 breath tests conducted statewide.
In the Western Region - which includes the New England - there were 56 seatbelt, 20 mobile phone and 1102 speeding infringements issued.
Police conducted 28,041 breath tests, and 70 people were charged with drink-driving.
There were 52 reported crashes with 33 people injured on the roads, however no lives were lost. During the same period of time last year, five people died in crashes.
Traffic and Highway Patrol Commander, Assistant Commissioner Stephen Hegarty, said police will continue to target behaviour that endangers lives on NSW roads.
"Over the festive season, we saw a number of concerning incidents of dangerous driving, including a learner driver allegedly detected high-range drink-driving at Griffith, and a woman who allegedly crashed into a road sign while drink-driving at Glenfield," Assistant Commissioner Hegarty said.
"We will continue to have a zero-tolerance approach to law breakers. The end of the double demerit operation isn't an excuse to forget the road rules, including the speed limit.
"Highway Patrol officers, together with local police, will continue to have a high-visibility presence in metro and regional areas across the state, targeting speeding, fatigue, and drink, drug, dangerous and distracted driving," Assistant Commissioner Hegarty said.
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