Waroona police officer-in-charge Sgt Keith Tarver urges drivers to look out for fatigue over Christmas period

Sean Van Der Wielen & Holly PrenticeHarvey-Waroona Reporter
Emergency crews were onsite cleaning up after a serious crash on the Forrest Highway near Waroona on Tuesday afternoon.
Camera IconEmergency crews were onsite cleaning up after a serious crash on the Forrest Highway near Waroona on Tuesday afternoon. Credit: Sean Van Der Wielen/South Western Times

The officer-in-charge of Waroona Police Station has called for drivers to be on alert over the festive season after a serious crash in the region last week.

Sgt Keith Tarver asked motorists to particularly look out for fatigue, with the Christmas and New Year double demerits period set to start midnight on Friday.

Police from both Harvey and Waroona were called to an incident on Forrest Highway just before 12pm on December 12 after reports an LJM Produce semi-trailer had jack-knifed in the middle of the road.

Three ambulance crews from St John WA were also sent to the crash scene but incredibly, there were no major injuries.

Both southbound lanes were blocked for hours as traffic was diverted on to Old Bunbury Road.

A vehicle carrying a swimming pool was involved in the crash, with witnesses describing the pool going through a separate vehicle’s window.

Sgt Tarver said it was fortunate the situation had not been more serious.

“It just goes to show that people need to be mindful of their surroundings, read the road ahead, drive to their abilities and stick to the speed limit because (the crash) could have been so much worse,” he said.

Sgt Tarver noted there would be increases in traffic on Forrest Highway and other major arterial routes during the festive period, with police set to target drink-driving and speeding.

But he described fatigue as also being “a big issue” on the roads.

“People have big days, they have a lot of things planned ... and (it) could be the journey home after a 10 or 12-hour day,” he said.

“They’re full of excitement, full of lots of emotional embraces with family and when they’re in the car, calm, quiet and almost home, that’s when complacency slips in.

“If something happens in front of you, you’ve got to be awake and alert enough to react instantly to avoid similar (crashes).”

Sgt Tarver said it was “everybody’s responsibility” to drive safely and carefully during the holiday period.

Double demerits will be in place until January 7.

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