Police have caught 51 hoons in the Colac Otway Shire area under the Brumby Government’s tough anti-hoon legislation, Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney said today.
Ms Tierney said Victoria Police had impounded more than 10,000 vehicles since the laws were introduced three and a half years ago to help keep Victorians safe on the road.
“Since the Brumby Government introduced these laws Victoria Police have done a great job of getting hoons off our street, however, there are still too many young men who treat our roads like race tracks,” she said.
Ms Tierney said 96 per cent of those to have had their vehicles impounded were male, with an average age of 24. Their most common offences have been excessive speed and improper use of a vehicle.
“These laws are making offenders take a long, hard look at themselves with just five per cent re-offending and only one per cent having their vehicle confiscated for good,” she said.
“The laws are getting through to dangerous drivers, but some of these young men are still not getting the message.
“New laws to be introduced this year will strengthen our anti-hoon message even further.”
Ms Tierney said the Brumby Government will extend impoundment times for other offences and sell or crush vehicles in extreme cases. This could see:
• First time offenders having their vehicle impounded or immobilised for a full week;
• Second time offenders having their vehicle impounded for up to three months; and
• Third time offenders losing their vehicle forever with vehicles sold and proceeds going to victims of crime, or if the vehicle is unsafe or illegally modified, their vehicle will be crushed.
Ms Tierney commended the work of Victoria Police to reduce the road toll to 290 road deaths last year – its lowest annual road toll since records began in 1952 – but said that this number was still too many.
“Hoon drivers need to wake up to themselves and realise their careless actions are putting their own lives and the lives of others at risk.
“I urge everyone who gets behind the wheel to think about the possible consequences of their actions – it’s not just losing their car that’s at stake.”