Passengers be aware too

'KEEP an eye on your driver' is the message the Coffs/Clarence local area command highway police are sending to passengers travelling this festive season.

Operation Safe Arrival 2007 begins from 12am on Friday, December 21 and runs through until Friday, January 4.

During this time, double demerit points apply for all speeding and seatbelt offences during this time.

Coffs/Clarence crime manager, inspector Cameron Lindsay, said passengers need to take part of the responsibility for a long trip.

"We're appealing to passengers to keep an eye on their driver, and don't be afraid to speak up if they're acting irresponsibly or getting fatigued," he said.

"The number of people that lose their lives on the road is a tragedy. A lot of the time, the people injured in an accident are the passengers. If you notice the driver getting tired or speeding, speak up."

The warning coincides with the arrival of Operations commander of the Traffic Services branch in Sydney, Inspector David Evans, in Coffs Harbour to support the local highway patrol in the holiday season.

"We really want everyone to enjoy the Christmas and New Year holidays, and part of that is driving safely and responsibly," he said.

He said safe driving is definitely something promoted within the police force.

"Highway patrol officers are on 12-hour shifts, but we make sure that every two hours they're off the road doing something else whether that be having a meeting with a supervisor to discuss the day so far, or a stationary job like random breath tests."

He also congratulated the local command for their provision that have led to a decline in the road toll.

"With the Pacific Highway such an emphasis with highway patrol, we come up to lend a hand during the holidays, but we're really just here to supplement the local guys, who do all the hard yards day in and day out.

"It's their actions and strategies that have led to a reduction in the road toll," he said.

Make sure you Stop, Revive, Survive these holidays.

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