'We want you here for Christmas' - Police urge drivers to take care

By Online News - Rereātea

With more than 360 deaths on our roads this year, police are asking people to drive to the conditions and to take care during the festive season. 

Assistant Commissioner for Road Policing Sandra Venables says the high number of deaths is an absolute tragedy.

“Every time any one of us gets behind the wheel we have a responsibility – to ourselves, to our family and loved ones, and to other road users – to drive responsibly.”

Venables says police, along with their road safety partners, are committed to reducing the number of deaths on our roads.

“Our focus over the holiday will be on the four main behaviours that contribute to harm in a crash – going too fast for the conditions, impairment from drugs, alcohol, or tiredness, distraction by things like cell phones, and lack of restraints.”

“Our aim is to save lives, plain and simple,” says Assistant Commissioner Venables.

Superintendent Stephen Greally, National Manager of Road Policing, says the trauma caused in a serious crash where people are injured or killed is devastating to everyone involved including friends and family.

“The speed you’re travelling at has a huge impact in the outcome of a crash and whether you walk away from it or not.”

“We want people to remember the speed limit is just that – a limit, not a target.”

“To back this up we now have a lower 4km speed threshold set on our static and mobile van safe speed cameras until 8 January.

We want people to get the message to slow down while they’re travelling to see loved ones over the holidays.

We want them to get there and back.”

“Putting a seatbelt on is another very simple act that makes a huge difference, and I’d like to see everybody do it.

Not only for yourself, but do it for your children, your parents, or your partner – put it on for the people who want to see you at the Christmas table.”

“We want everybody to have a great summer holiday, not one filled with grief.”

“So please drive safely, we want you here for Christmas,” says Superintendent Greally.