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Transit to target dangerous roadside car sales

19 January 2004

Transit to target dangerous roadside car sales

Roadside car sellers who park their vehicles alongside state highways in New Plymouth face having them towed, as Transit New Zealand begins to crack down on the illegal practice.

Transit regional manager Errol Christiansen said there had been a marked increase in the number of vehicles for sale parked alongside State Highway 45 at Spotswood and on State Highway 3 at Bell Block and Coronation Avenue. Transit had received an increase in the number of complaints from members of the public regarding the issue.

He said the parked cars hinder safety and could cause disruption to traffic flows. A bylaw authorises Transit to tow offending vehicles.

“Transit exercises some flexibility in its approach to the issue of roadside car sales, but not when the safety of road users is at risk. This has forced us to start policing the issue more stringently.

“Some motorists are distracted by cars for sale and slow down or stop suddenly to take a closer look, which is a safety hazard. The other safety concern is people getting out of their cars and dashing across the busy roads to inspect the vehicles,” Mr Christiansen said.

He said Transit’s contractors would be monitoring the problem areas seven days a week. A warning note would be left on the windscreen of offending vehicles, and registration numbers noted. If the vehicle was not removed, or was removed but then returned to the site again, it would be towed.

“We hope that owners will heed the warning notices so it won’t be necessary to tow vehicles away. But in this situation the safety of road users is our main concern and we will not hesitate to take action if necessary.”

The maximum penalty under the bylaw is a $500 fine plus the cost of towing.

ENDS

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