Motorists are being urged to drive safely this Easter long weekend as police prepare to saturate south-west roads during the running of Operation Nexus.
South-west police road safety manager Senior Sergeant Chris Asenjo said the five-day road safety campaign will run from Thursday, April 18 to Monday, April 22.
"We will be targeting speed, fatigue, impaired driving, distraction and seat belt non-compliance," he said.
"The campaign will run in conjunction with Operation Kinetic which has thrown an extra 300 road policing shifts onto our roads.
"You will see more police on the roads in both a marked and unmarked capacity, to ensure people are getting to where they want to go safely.
"And if you get pulled over for doing the wrong thing, you can expect a penalty notice and not a warning."
Senior Sergeant Asenjo said those preparing to go away should plan ahead, be patient and ensure they take adequate breaks.
"Include those breaks in your plan so that you know where you will stop and when," he said.
"For those travelling with kids, make sure they have their own distractions. I know when I'm travelling with my kids in the back they can make for a trying time, so keep them entertained so you can keep your eyes on the road.
"Ensure you stay within the speed limit and leave your mobile phone out of reach. And if you plan on having a few drinks or consuming drugs, please don't get behind the wheel."
Warrnambool CFA senior station officer Peter Hall said the long weekend usually saw more people on the roads as well as more campfires being lit.
"The Fire Danger Period remains in place and there is no talk of it being lifted anytime soon," he said.
"This means that people can have a fire for personal warmth or for cooking, but it can only be a metre size, or they will need a permit.
"All campfires need to have a three metre clearance, should never be left unattended and need to be fully extinguished before people leave or go to bed. People also need to ensure they have adequate water supply on hand to put it out."
Campfires are not allowed in some areas of public land and are prohibited on Total Fire Ban days.
Keep your burn-off safe and legal:
- Check fire restrictions with your local council and register your burn on 1800 668 511
- Check and monitor weather conditions - particularly wind
- To avoid unnecessary calls to emergency services, notify your neighbours beforehand
- Leave a three metre fire break, free from flammable materials around the burn
- Have sufficient equipment and water to stop the fire spreading
- Never leave a burn-off unattended - stay for its entire duration
- If your burn-off gets out of control, call '000' immediately
For more information about burning off, go to cfa.vic.gov.au/burnoff
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