ACC Stop Bus Launch

  • Marie Hasler
Associate Accident Rehabilitation and Compensation Insurance

Royal Pavilion, NZ Expo Centre, Green Lane West, Auckland

Good morning everyone.

I'm delighted to be here today, on behalf of ACC, to hand over to police this important new resource in the fight against drinking and driving.

Previous speakers have already emphasised the huge toll paid by society as a whole that results from alcohol-related road crashes.

New Zealand has made encouraging progress in recent years towards reducing our road toll. A great deal of effort has also gone into educating drivers about the consequences of excessive speed, of not using seat belts, and most especially, the dangers of drinking and driving.

ACC is one of several organisations which has been active in getting the anti drink-drive message across.

Late last year I helped launch a new road safety video produced by ACC featuring Peter Brock. One of the points he emphasises in the video is even one drink can affect your ability to drive safely and can have disastrous consequences.

This initiative today represents the next step-up in the campaign against drinking and driving. When all else fails - when the messages don't get across, and when people persist in getting behind the wheel after drinking, then there has to be a credible deterrent - the big stick.

We know from overseas experience that the strong likelihood of being caught and punished acts as just such a deterrent. This vehicle will considerably enhance the successful police drink-drive enforcement already under way in Auckland and Canterbury.

To be effective, enforcement must be visible, and it must be sustained. This new vehicle will certainly add a very visible presence to the road safety effort. This initiative will also be a sustained one.

Police have given ACC a commitment that these resources will be integrated into their anti drink-drive programme. This bus and the other three that will follow shortly will be used on an on-going basis to keep alcohol-impaired drivers off our roads.

Those who are tempted to drink and drive should take the warning from this new initiative - there is now a very good chance that they will be caught.

ACC is determined that the huge financial and personal costs of drink-drive crashes should be brought down. ACC is very pleased to be able to contribute to the Police compulsory breath-testing programme in this very practical way.

Congratulations to both organisations on this programme. I am confident that this is an investment that will repay itself many times over. It now gives me great please to present the keys of this, the first ACC Stop Bus to Deputy Commissioner, Rob Robinson.