School holidays trigger Road Safety concerns

Ultimately, everything is up to you
Supplied Content
Wellington, September 27, 2018
Police and the New Zealand Transport Agency are asking everybody travelling these school holidays to plan ahead, take regular breaks, and stay safe on our roads.
During five days over the school holidays last year, 6-10 October 2017, 15 lives were lost on our roads.
The total deaths for the whole month was 32.

Assistant Commissioner for Road Policing Sandra Venables
“If the same thing happens this year, we are going to have 32 people die in October. Who is it going to be, you, a member of your family, a friend, or one of your colleagues?” Assistant Commissioner for Road Policing Sandra Venables asked.
Gambling with lives
“I talk about this often and yet people are still willing to gamble with lives – either their own, their passengers’, or someone else who is sharing the road with them. We know the behaviours that put people at risk, we tell you what our staff will be focused on, yet we are still talking about deaths on our roads,” she said.
New Zealand Transport Agency acting Director Safety and Environment Lisa Rossiter agrees.

“Everyone thinks it won’t happen to them but our data says it will happen to someone. If you are away with your family these school holidays, ensure that you are well rested before you set off, and ensure that your focus is driving safely on the roads.
Check your speed
“Watch your speed and following distances, make sure you’re driving fresh and alert, don’t get distracted by the kids in the back or by your phone, and make sure everyone is wearing their seatbelt. If everyone abides by these simple guidelines we will help prevent deaths and serious injuries on our roads,” Ms Rossiter said.

Four behaviours
Ms Venables said that Police’s focus will remain on the four main behaviours that we know contribute to death and serious injury on our roads; driving too fast for the conditions, driving impaired (which includes fatigue), driving distracted, and people not wearing their seatbelt.
“For Police’s part in road safety, at the end of June, our Police Commissioner set an operational road safety target for Police of 5% reduction in road deaths each and every year, she said.

The baseline for this is 2017, when 378 people were tragically killed on our roads.
Public responsibility
“Achieving the target would mean saving 19 lives every year. We know that we have to work alongside our road safety partners and our communities to achieve this target.
“Everyone using our roads has a responsibility to ensure that safety is their first priority.
If we all work together, we can make a difference and stop deaths on our roads. To save your life and your family’s lives, you need to drive responsibly every time you get in your vehicle and always be aware of other road users,” Ms Venables said.

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