Police to return to Somerset Dam

POLICE will likely make a return visit to Somerset Dam over the Christmas-New Year holidays after a successful Easter operation.

Police and Seqwater rangers were at the dam over the Easter long weekend, keeping an eye on revellers on and off the water.

The Ipswich Tactical Crime Squad (TCS) led the operation with assistance from the rangers and Esk and Kilcoy police.

TCS officer in charge Senior Sergeant Glenn Fleming said he was “very pleased” with the behaviour of people at Somerset.

Reinforcing the message that alcohol and boating don't mix, police conducted random breath tests on boat and car drivers, made sure boats carried the correct number of PFDs (personal flotation devices) and that cars were street legal.

“We conducted 307 RBTs (random breath tests) on people in vehicles and 51 on boat drivers and we had no positives over the four days starting last Thursday,” Snr Sgt Fleming said yesterday.

“We're very pleased with the behaviour of people both in the campsites and on the water.”

The pleasing result is a contrast to the Easter road campaign, which left police furious after they caught hundreds of drivers speeding on roads in the Ipswich area.

Similar to the Easter road safety campaign, non-operational police were deployed at Somerset Dam to bolster numbers.

The campers and boaties weren't completely spotless, however, with seven marine infringements and four traffic infringement notices.

Snr Sgt Fleming said the marine infringements included not having correct safety equipment and towing someone on a personal watercraft without a licence.

The traffic infringements included expired registration, failure to display a P-plate and driving a defective vehicle.

Nevertheless, they were the minority.

“Due to favourable responses from the public and the proactive success of the operation police, at this stage, will be out there again for Christmas and the New Year,” Snr Sgt Fleming said.

• What do you think? Email Peter.Foley@qt.com.au.

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