DANGEROUS DRIVERS: About one hoon a day is caught in Gympie.
DANGEROUS DRIVERS: About one hoon a day is caught in Gympie. Rob Williams

'Lethal threat': More than 2000 hoons caught in five years

POLICE are catching almost one hoon a day in the region, with more than 2000 offenders caught in the past five years.

According to data released by the Department of Transport and Main Roads, 2260 offenders were booked for exceeding the speed limit by at least 20kmh between January 1, 2012 and January 31, 2017.

The statistics come as the RACQ raises concerns over the "lethal risk” these drivers pose on our roads.

While a slight decrease has occurred in the past 13 months - 27 offenders were caught in January this year, and 361 offenders in 2016 overall - the number of drivers travelling at least 40kmh over the limit has risen.

In 2016, 20 drivers were caught travelling more than 40kmh over the limit, up from 19 in 2015 and 15 in 2014. The number of drivers caught travelling 31-40kmh over the limit in each of the past two years (53 in 2016, 58 in 2015) was almost double the number in 2014 (29).

According to the DTMR, the statistics only account for "non-camera speeding offences” and the data could be "understated due to the prolonged time it takes for these matters to be finalised”.

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RACQ spokeswoman Lauren Ritchie said hoons pose a serious risk.

"While still unsafe, we understand some people may inadvertently speed a couple of kilometres over the limit occasionally but we struggle to believe those caught travelling at more than 20kmh always did so accidentally,” Ms Ritchie said.

"The risk of a crash is far greater at these sorts of speeds, not to mention the severity of injury when a crash occurs.”

Drivers who are caught exceeding the legal limit by more than 40kmh could be charged with a type two hooning offence.

"High-range speeding is taken very seriously in Queensland,” she said.

"You won't only receive a fine of $1137 and eight demerit points, but you'll also cop a six-month licence suspension. If you're caught a second time you'll have your car impounded or immobilised for seven days.”

Gympie Times


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