Scooter rider on bender
A SCOOTER rider allegedly almost four times the legal blood alcohol limit and attempting to travel up the Kuranda Range to Mareeba was the lowlight of an otherwise relatively incident-free Christmas Day on Far Northern roads.
The 24-year-old Mareeba man was allegedly wearing no helmet, no shirt and no shoes as he attempted the journey on the Kennedy Highway on Tuesday.
A Mareeba police spokesperson said officers had received multiple phone calls from concerned motorists who spotted the man travelling erratically.
He said when police tracked the man down he recorded a blood alcohol level of 0.18 per cent.
"They found him, with his scooter, asleep on the side of the road about 150m north of the lookout," the spokesperson said.
Far Northern police said road incidents had remained relatively quiet over the break, although there had been some high-range, drink-driving offences.
This was reinforced by statewide information yesterday with police saying a road safety campaign and increased patrols could be why Queensland's roads have been safer than usual this Christmas.
Queensland recorded its first fatality of the holiday season early yesterday morning when a man died after his car veered off a highway and rolled at Sleeper Log Creek, northwest of Townsville.
Police say the lower road toll is no reason for complacency.
"Offences detected have decreased slightly, however there's still a lot of people speeding (and) a lot of people not wearing a seatbelt which is a concern for us all," Acting Police Superintendent Paul Fogg said yesterday.
Supt Fogg said a pre-Christmas media blitz and the absence of schoolchildren on the roads could have contributed to the favourable holiday road toll.
Extra police patrols had to be making a significant difference as well, he said.
More than 5500 people have been recorded speeding and 218 drivers have been booked for drink-driving since December 23, with some recording blood alcohol levels more than four times the legal limit.
A total of 24 people have died on Far Northern roads this year, with the state total at 27.
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