WHILE stationary road side breath testing stations may be abandoned in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, highway patrol and road safety experts are warning drivers, if you do the wrong, you will still be caught.
Last week, the NSW Police executive took measures to minimise the risk to officers and announced as of Monday, commanders will use their discretion as to whether random drug and alcohol tests will be carried out.
The decision, made in conjunction with and the agreement of the Police Association of NSW, will not only protect the health of first responders, but will allow for a more mobile workforce in the future, ready to respond to the expected increase in demand on police resources, over the coming weeks.
Matthew Irvine, road safety and driver education specialist, said while stationary RBTs may have been stopped for the time being, drivers need to do the right thing, or they can expect to be caught out.
"I think the message needs to be that random breath testing will still continue, it's just the roadside stationary set-ups that will be put on hold," he said.
Still he said scaling back may result in an increase of illegal behaviour by some behind the wheel, which he said puts people at risk.
"There's no doubt, when enforcement activities are reduced or scaled back, illegal behaviours increase," he said.
"That can only lead to a greater level of risk taking on the roads."
A spokesperson for NSW police said proactive policing activities play a vital role in keeping the community safe and also confirmed police will continue to remain focused on traffic enforcement strategies, including mobile RBT and random drug tests.
NSW Roads Minister Andrew Constance said there will still be policing on the roads and warned people will get caught if they drink and drive.
"There are still mobile drink driving tests happening across the road network, so you will get caught," he said.
Police reminded the public on Sunday officers had powers under the Public Health Act to enforce public health orders in relation to COVID-19 and it was an offence not to comply.
Crime Stoppers now has a reporting option to take informationfrom the public about anyone not complying with those orders by visiting www.nsw.crimestoppers.com.au or calling 1800 333 000.
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