The first of a newly constructed fleet of alcohol and drug buses will soon roll-out across the state and will help Victoria Police in the fight against drunk and drug-affected drivers.
Police Minister Lisa Neville today inspected the state-of-the-art buses in Ballarat, which will replace the ageing fleet with new vehicles aimed at giving police greater flexibility in targeting locations across regional Victoria.
A total of 10 buses, funded by the Andrews Labor Government in the Victorian Budget 2015/16, are about to roll off the production line, with the first set to appear on Victorian roads later this month.
The buses, an investment of $11.7 million by the Labor Government, were built by specialist vehicle manufacturers Brimarco, based in Ballarat and Derrimut-based Byron Wade.
The awarding of the contract to local manufacturers has created 18 new jobs in Victoria, including tradespeople, designers and engineers.
The new fleet includes six smaller buses that can access locations that are currently difficult for larger buses to reach including narrow and difficult to access country roads.
This flexibility means police can target more areas, more often and keep our roads safe.
The buses are fitted out with the latest technology, including LED lights, Guardian Detection System, side lights, a rear-mounted variable message sign and programmable emergency lights and siren control.
Up to 3,000 full-licence drivers are caught with blood-alcohol concentrations of between 0.05 and 0.07 each year.
In 2016, more than 55 per cent of drivers and riders killed on the roads were drug or alcohol impaired.
Country Victorians are four times more likely to be killed on the roads than drivers in metropolitan Melbourne.
Quote attributable to Minister for Police Lisa Neville
“This new fleet of alcohol and drug buses will help police keep drunk and drug-affected motorists off our roads to help keep all Victorians safe.”
Quote attributable to Member for Wendouree Sharon Knight
“This is a positive boost for Ballarat -- it means more jobs locally and will help police target more locations, more often and keep our roads safe.”
Quote attributable to Member for Buninyong Geoff Howard
“Drink-driving at any level is incredibly dangerous – even at 0.05, drink-drivers double their chances of crashing, risking not only their lives but the lives of others.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020