Drug driving and demerits


By Mitchell Clarke

A Pakenham mother, who was allegedly driving on meth while her three children were in the car, has been removed from the roads after she managed to accumulate a whopping 130 demerit points.

The 33-year-old woman was intercepted by Cardinia Highway Patrol on Wednesday 12 February, after officers were alerted to the dangerous driver through the Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) technology.

The Gazette understands the woman tested positive to driving with Methamphetamine in her system during a roadside drug test.

Her license was listed as disqualified and her three children were in the car when she was pulled over.

All drivers begin with zero demerit points and a fully licensed motorist can collect 12 demerit points over a three year period, according to VicRoads, who were contacted for comment regarding the incident.

The number of demerit points received depends on the offence committed.

Cardinia Local Area Commander Inspector Dearne Dummett couldn’t provide details on the woman’s driving history or how she was able to accumulate the points, but acknowledged it was a high number.

“We agree that accumulating 130 demerit points is excessive,” Insp Dummett said.

“Every day police continue to attend crash scenes where people have consciously chosen to speed, not wear seatbelts or drive under the influence of drugs and alcohol.”

Inspector Dummett said the case should serve as a warning to all drivers that police are patrolling the roads to catch motorists engaging in dangerous driving.

“The message is clear – we will be out and about intercepting vehicles, conducting breath and drug tests and checking speeds,” she said.

“If you do the wrong thing, you’ll be caught.”

The ANPR technology which alerted officers to the alleged offender has been around for a number of years.

“In recent times we have increased the use (of the technology), especially Highway Patrol units,” Insp Dummett added.

“The purpose of the ANPR system is to safety and quickly identify motorists committing specific road safety breaches by utilising custom built cameras and software that identify registration number plates and checks these plates against relevant databases.”

The woman’s car was impounded at a cost of $895 and she’ll appear before a court at a later date.

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