BRUCE BLITZ: 220 motorists tested in four-hour highway sting
BOTH north and southbound lanes coming from Gympie to the Sunshine Coast were heavily delayed last night as police conducted Operation Lasso.
Coast police were alcohol and drug testing motorists coming into the Coast as Wide Bay officers were testing those leaving the region.
Officers were set up on the Bruce Highway at Federal, 30km south of Gympie between 9pm-1am.
About 20 tactical crime squad and road policing unit officers pulled over and tested 220 motorists.
And surprisingly, the large-scale operation only busted a handful of motorists; three people were arrested on drug possession charges and only one person tested positive to driving under the influence of drugs.
While the readings need to be confirmed, officer in charge of the Sunshine Coast Tactical Crime Squad, Senior Sergeant Scott Wiggins, said the drugs were cannabis and amphetamines.
No one tested positive to driving under the influence of alcohol.
Snr Sgt Wiggins said the operation was successful and the results were pleasing.
"We do hope for low numbers," he said.
"The whole purpose of the operation was for two main reasons: one, to identify and respond to offenders entering the Coast district and, second, to reduce the number of road trauma incidents alcohol and drug influenced.
"Last night we had a very positive result, and it's not usual because it depends on several factors.
"But we have set up in places like Maroochydore and Mooloolaba at times and received a high number of offenders."
Snr Sgt Wiggins said Coast residents could expect to see an increased police presence on the roads conducting RBTs and drug tests.
"We are absolutely increasing police numbers on the highway and main arterial roads," he said.
"It's all about identifying offenders coming into the Sunshine Coast."