20 July, 2012
Crashes reminder of need to focus on safety
Associate Transport Minister Simon Bridges is concerned by the recent spate of road crashes and says these show the need to continue progress in improving safety.
“July has been a tragic month on the roads, and my thoughts are with those who have lost loved ones.
“At 161, our road toll is six higher than it was at this time last year, yet the number of fatal crashes is down by 11. This means that the crashes that are occurring are resulting in multiple fatalities.”
The message for drivers is clear – when you take chances on the road, you not only risk your life but also the lives of those in your vehicle and those you are sharing the road with. For the Government, these numbers are a reminder that there is still more to be done to improve safety on our roads.
“It’s important that we take the steps we can to stop death and injury on New Zealand roads. Later this year, we’ll be introducing alcohol interlocks and a zero drink drive limit as a sentencing option for repeat drink drivers. Work is also underway on a number of other initiatives.
“Rules and regulations can only do so much though. The Government is taking a Safe System approach to road safety, working across the road system and recognising that accidents are inevitable, so road engineering and technology can and must be used to reduce their impact when they do occur.
“I’d encourage road users to do what they can to create a safer system. Make safety a priority, buy the safest car you can afford, take simple steps like wearing a seatbelt and avoid unnecessary risks like unsafe speeds or drink or drug driving.
“If you know someone that does drink or take drugs and drive, do something. It’s difficult to confront people about their behaviour, but the stakes are too high not to.”