MOTORISTS aren't getting the message that Mount Panorama is a public road, not a race track.
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Bathurst Highway Patrol officers have been out in force in recent days for Operation Australia Day, a high-visibility policing operation targeting bad behaviour behind the wheel.
Mount Panorama is one of the places officers frequently patrol and in the first three days of the operation they detected four motorists travelling more than 45km/h over the signposted speed.
Chief Inspector Simon Maund, the traffic inspector for the Macquarie Cluster of the Traffic and Highway Patrol Command, said it was "disappointing" to see motorists flouting the rules.
"Over the weekend we saw a fair bit of poor driving," he said.
"We've stopped four drivers over the weekend for exceeding the speed limit by more than 45km/h, with some of those drivers being pretty inexperienced drivers as well.
"We're seeing people from outside of the area come to Bathurst to replicate what they think is a performance on a race track, and it's really disappointing considering the effort we are putting in to the Australia Day statewide traffic operation and all the good work that's going on across the community to try and improve safety on roads across the area."
He said the highest speed seen in recent days was over 130km/h.
Some of the drivers caught have been Provisional licence holders who were driving vehicles too powerful for that classification.
"We've got P-platers who are driving prohibited vehicles, vehicles that are too powerful for a P-plater to be allowed to legally drive, and also not displaying their P plates," Chief Inspector Maund said.
".... It's a real worry, because some of these offences have occurred where they've crossed to the incorrect side of the road. Not only are they speeding, they are on the wrong side of the road as well.
"These people are treating this area like a public race track, rather than a residential street in a regional area.
"It is a concern and, with the speeds these people are travelling at, if there is a crash then there is going to be a serious outcome for the road users involved."
He encouraged people to stick to the speed limit and the correct side of the road.
Other Mount Panorama road users should be extra vigilant while driving in the area, as they could encounter people driving dangerously.
"We don't as drivers normally anticipate that someone is going to be on the wrong side of the road driving at those sort of speeds, but certainly over the weekend there were at least four drivers driving like that, so it is something for regular users and occasional users of the area to be aware of," Chief Inspector Maund said.
Police will continue to patrol Mount Panorama, along with other roads in the region, throughout Operation Australia Day.
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