Lifestyle

Eat and drive, play music too loud, and you'll cop a big fine

Queensland police introduce new "Fatal 5" cars to their highway fleet to highlight inattention as a reason people die on our roads.
Queensland police introduce new "Fatal 5" cars to their highway fleet to highlight inattention as a reason people die on our roads. Rae Wilson

DRIVERS eating - or even playing loud music - could be fined $330 for inattention under Queensland's Fatal Five police campaign to cut the state's rising road toll.

Police Minister Jack Dempsey launched the new Fatal Five highway patrol cars on Tuesday with the news that 15 days into the new year, Queensland had recorded 15 road fatalities.

During the same period last year, Queensland had nine.

Mr Dempsey said some of those deaths could have been avoided.

"That's why we've added distraction as one of the fatal five," he said.

Speeding, drink-driving, not wearing a seatbelt and driving while fatigued make up the rest of the Fatal Five.

Police Commissioner Ian Stewart said officers could fine someone eating behind the wheel, if they thought the action was distracting enough.

Mr Stewart said the food could be anything from a chocolate bar to trying to eat stir-fry.

He said even someone playing distractingly loud music could find themselves fined.

"We've all seen it in our own lives, people reading something, looking away, picking something up off the passenger seat when they should be watching the road as the vehicle is moving forward," he said. "It will depend on the circumstances, but anything that causes inattention while that driver is in control of the vehicle can be considered by police.

"Every one of those (crashes) can be avoided by people being smarter - not texting on their phone, not eating that pie, not trying to put their make-up on or trying to do their hair as they drive into work."

Mr Stewart said officers had handed out almost 600 tickets - worth a $330 fine and three demerit points - for inattention over the Christmas period.

He said statistics showed about 1200 of the state's injury crashes in the past 12 months had been attributed to inattention.

"It's a shame the public don't seem to be getting this. Inattention is a very dangerous (road accident) contributor," he said.

Mr Dempsey said the campaign cars would travel throughout Queensland to push the message that distraction and inattention caused road deaths.

Topics:  cars news, driving, police, road rules




Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

'I apologise every day that I am not the person he married'

My battle with postnatal depression...

'My husband lasted 6 weeks as a stay at home dad'

APN Hey Mummy Feature for online - stock images. Katie Dykes being interviewed for the webisodes. Photo Marc Stapelberg / The Northern Star

FROM the outside, being a stay at home mum looks like a breeze.

THE EXPERT: Stop judging working mothers

SUPER MUMS: Being a working mums comes down to perfecting time management.

"WORKING for money is all right; so is working because you want to.”

Health and nutrition with kids - how do you balance it?

HOW important is health and nutrition in your household?

Smack or no smack - where do you stand?

THE debate is reignited - is smacking acceptable?

Technology and kids: Do you ever cut their wi-fi?

Check out our new video series featuring mums having a chat

Greens don’t want to stop Gladstone exporting coal now

Greens senate candidate Andrew Bartlett with Greens candidate Craig Tomsett.

Greens plan to transition out of coal industry

Show me the jobs: Officeworks has 25 on offer

Office Works will open in the old Sassi building on Hansen Road.Photo Mike Richards / The Observer

Officeworks to open in September.

PHOTOS: Terrifying boating accident inspires Gladstone couple to act

Gladstone Fishing Network Facebook page admin Dave and Eve Malone experienced a horrific boating accident, and are hoping to deliver the message of how important VMR is, as well as hosting a fundraiser for the organisation this weekend.

AFTER a scary accident, this couple know the importance of the VMR

Latest deals and offers

Soccer kids enjoy clinic

Clinton's Charles Heeron - Senior Soccer between Clinton and Meteors. Saturday, May 14th, 2016.

A League goalkeeper Michael Theo was passing down his soccer wisdom to about 30...

Soccer kids enjoy clinic

Clinton's Charles Heeron - Senior Soccer between Clinton and Meteors. Saturday, May 14th, 2016.

A League goalkeeper Michael Theo was passing down his soccer wisdom to about 30...

Oddis the foster dog

Oddis the foster dog

Oddis the foster dog needs a forever home.

Burnett Heads housing development approved

COUNCIL APPROVED: A Burnett Heads housing development has been approved by Bundaberg Regional Council. Photo Contributed

Councillors approved the development seven votes to four

Three bedroom, 1100sqm block: Is this Qld's cheapest home?

BARGAIN BUY: Is this North Bundaberg property the cheapest home in Queensland?

Becoming a real estate mogul is all about risk and reward