As tributes flow for Scott Morrison, police target reckless driving
NSW Police are targeting the Shoalhaven – a “high-risk crash area” – as part of a push to reduce the state’s road toll.
Operation Saturation 2 started on Sunday and will continue until the end of September.
Centre for Road Safety statistics show 14 people have died on Shoalhaven roads so far this year.
The statistics also show that between 2008 and 2012, 52 people were killed and 1710 injured as a result of crashes in the region.
The Shoalhaven is one of several targeted across the state.
“This campaign is about improving road safety by targeting specific behaviours that are amongst some of the biggest killers on our roads,” Roads Minister Duncan Gay said.
“They include speeding, drink-driving, illegal mobile phone use and seatbelt offences.”
He said that based on the Centre for Road Safety’s crash data, “police presence will be boosted in areas that have been identified as leading locations for fatal crashes this year”.
This year’s NSW road toll rose to 204, after the deaths of Scott Morrison and Peter Barclay in a collision on Culburra Road on Saturday afternoon.
As of Sunday, 105 drivers, 35 motorcyclists, 25 vehicle passengers, 31 pedestrians and eight cyclists had died on NSW roads.
This is slightly higher than the 198 deaths recorded this time last year.
Traffic and Highway Patrol’s Acting Assistant Commissioner Bob Ryan said Operation Saturation 2 would see police working more than 1000 extra shifts between now and September.
By ROBERT CRAWFORD
A GREAT bloke with a big heart who was always willing to help is how well-known local fund-raiser and Christmas light enthusiast Scott Morrison is being remembered.
The Shoalhaven community is in shock after the death of Mr Morrison
He and Nowra East man Peter Barclay died in a motor vehicle accident on Culburra Road on Saturday afternoon.
Tributes have flowed for Mr Morrison, who with his wife Brenda raised more than $60,000 for the children’s ward at Shoalhaven Hospital.
“It is just tragic,” said long-time friend Peter Russell.
“He was a great mate to everyone who knew him.
“People often over-use the terms ‘great man’, ‘good fella’, ‘top mate’, and they can lose their actual meaning.
“But Scott was all of those and more.
“He truly went out of his way for everyone he met and was always there for anyone who needed a hand. It was hard not to like Scott.
“His Christmas lights display weren’t an ego thing, he genuinely wanted to give something back to his community, that’s why they became more and more spectacular.
“He was a tremendous friend, a brilliant father and a very faithful, loving husband.”
Mr Morrison had worked with Integrity Real Estate since February after previously working for Shell and Coles Express for many years, where he was a state merchandising manager.
Mr Russell said Mr Morrison’s brilliant display at Gumnut Way was all about providing joy at Christmas and raising money for the local hospital.
Mrs Morrison, also well-known as an employee at Franklins and later Woolworths at Stockland Nowra for 20 years, is listed in a stable condition but has severe injuries including six broken ribs, a cracked sternum, punctured lung, two fractured vertebrae, a badly broken right arm which she was due to have surgery on and numerous lacerations.
Their daughters Lilly, 7, suffered a broken right arm and Charlotte, 4, a broken left wrist.
Mr Russell said one of the hardest things he has ever witnessed was being present when Mrs Morrison told her daughters that their father had died in the accident.
“Being a father it was horrible. The girls are naturally struggling with it,” he said.
“One of them said Daddy was her hero and asked why he had saved them and not himself?”
Friend Scott Edgerton had known Mr Morrison for 15 years, working with him on his Christmas light extravaganza for a decade.
“It’s a great loss, we’re all going to miss him terribly,” he said.
“[He was] an incredible man who will be sadly missed.”
Former 2ST/Power FM announcer Adam Straney had known Mr Morrison for a decade, saying he did much for the community.
“He may have only had his lights out for two weeks of the year but everyone knew him and his display,” he said.
“He and Brenda and the kids made Christmas more fun.
“Just a great bloke, with a wonderful smile – he was always in a good mood.
“I hope the community never forgets him and I would love to see it come together and continue his work and put on his light show as a tribute to him.”