Don’t look back on this weekend with regret

The Government is urging New Zealanders’ to keep safety front of mind when travelling this long weekend.

“Helping get Kiwis home safe this weekend involves safe roads, safe vehicles, safe speeds and importantly drivers making smart decisions on the road,” Michael Wood said.

“Across the millions of kilometres travelled by New Zealanders this long weekend, drivers will make errors, or be on the receiving end of them. While bad calls can happen, deaths and serious injuries are not inevitable, and they are not something that we should accept as the price to pay just to use our roads. 

“As a Government, we are investing significantly into road safety improvements across the country, delivering the installation of median barriers, roundabouts for dangerous intersections, re-engineering sections of roads and other safety enhancements. We’re also working to remove unsafe vehicles, and we’re ensuring we have speed limits in place that suit each road, but we need drivers to play their part. 

“On average, one person is killed every day on New Zealand roads, and another seven are seriously injured. We need to stop accepting that deaths on our roads are inevitable. Each death is a person who leaves behind a family, a workplace, a community. They are not simply a toll that we pay when we decide to turn the key. Together we need to work to change our long-held attitudes to driving,” Michael Wood said.

“Every New Zealander has a role to play in keeping each other safe this weekend whether you’re driving, a passenger, or on your bike,” Poto Williams said.

“Police will be out in force across New Zealand roads over the long weekend. While speed will be a key focus area, they’ll also be targeting impaired drivers and distracted drivers.

“Our frontline will continue to remain visible, continuously changing deployment locations, and covering all parts of our roading network.

“Drivers should take their time, be courteous and follow the road rules, they’re there to keep us all safe.

“Anyone who witnesses dangerous behaviour should report it to Police, and any driver can expect to be stopped if they are not driving safely.

“We are also entering the winter months, so we’ll have our road maintenance teams from Waka Kotahi out responding to changing conditions, and drivers need to do the same.

“Our Government is doing everything it can to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads but this has to be a shared community effort. It will take us all to get to zero,” Poto Williams said.