Trinidad and Tobago: Highway patrol officers put drivers on notice as festive season approaches

Trinidad and Tobago: Highway patrol officers put drivers on notice as festive season approaches

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Trinidad and Tobago: The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service Traffic and Highway Patrol Branch advised all motorists and road users that intense road traffic enforcement exercises will commence across all highways and secondary roads. This is part of the Branch’s road policing and anti-crime operations for Christmas.

Senior Superintendent Wayne Mystar advised drivers to be alert for multiple road traffic exercises, focusing on detecting high-risk offences such as Driving Under the Influence (DUI), roadway speed limit violations, and non-seatbelt use.

The Senior Superintendent said, “The inclement weather hampered many of our planned speed enforcement exercises, but my officers continue to see persons engaging in reckless and dangerous driving practices which threaten the safety of both themselves and other road users, and we will not be tolerating these unsafe behaviours” He added that the patrol teams and task force unit would be out in full force to monitor drivers for traffic offences and violations, and search for contraband and firearms.

In November, the Traffic and Highway Patrol Branch arrested and charged 15 drivers for DUI offences; equally disturbing is the high breath alcohol levels which were recorded, more than twice the legal limit of around 35 microgrammes.

Police road safety coordinator Sergeant Brent Batson confirmed that there had been a marked increase in the occurrences of drunk driving offences. Drivers are reminded that this offence will result in a driver’s arrest and carries a hefty maximum fine of $12,000, for a first offence and $22,500, for second or subsequent offences.

Additional breathalyser technicians and recertified officers have been added to augment the strength of the DUI enforcement capacity across the TTPS during Christmas into the Carnival season. There were two additional road traffic deaths over the past two days.

These latest road deaths bring the road death figure for 2022 to eighty-three (83) compared to seventy-two (72), an increase of 15% as compared to the same period last year. The TTPS appeals to drivers to practice safe and responsible road use, designate a driver or utilise ride-share or taxi services to safeguard themselves and other road users.