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Grim Display To Bring Home The Message

Grim Display To Bring Home The Message

New Zealand Police National News Release

20 August 2008

Media: welcome at Glasnevin, North Canterbury, 21 August 2008.

Police hope a grim display at their Compliance Station in Waipara, North Canterbury, this week will help truck drivers realise the dangers of working long hours. This is part of the month long campaign this August to highlight truck crashes along the Kaikoura State Highway.

"It's an opportunity to expose drivers to safety information and interact with cops and other agencies without an enforcement input," says CVIU Sergeant Mike Moloney. "We'll have a wrecked truck cab there to give hard evidence of the damage that heavy vehicles can sustain during a crash, dispelling the myth that trucks are bullet proof — a complacency that each year leads to loss of life through not wearing seat belts,"

The Commercial Vehicle Investigation Unit will be running a barbecue and providing food and information throughout the day, the ACC will have information on fatigue and local trucking organisations will be taking part.

"Our staff are kept very busy answering questions and giving advice on all matters relating to commercial vehicles," says Sergeant Maloney.

The month long campaign got off to a difficult start as early August brought adverse weather which closed part of the Kakoura highway.

"They were unfortunate weather conditions but it's pretty good now and we're back to normal enforcement," says Mike Moloney.

The campaign aims to reduce carnage along the coast road as trucks feature prominently in crash statistics for the area. Police are working with other agencies and industry groups to promote safer driving.

About 670 vehicles passed through the Compliance Station last year with staff talking with around 350 drivers. They hope this year will be even better.

The wider campaign is organised by the Cluster Group, a collection that includes Police, ACC, LTNZ, RTA (NZ Road Transport Association), Environment Canterbury, Transit NZ, Tranzqual, and local and district councils. Several businesses have also contributed through the donation of services and resources.

The message focuses around five safety Ss: sleep; speed; stability; stress; seat belts. Speed trailers with electronic readouts will remind drivers of their speed approaching some of the coast's worst bends. Drivers will also see safety messages on billboards along the route, and on posters on ferries, transport depots, truck stops and cafes.

The Cluster Group campaign began on 2 August with a seminar in Christchurch. It was repeated in Auckland on 9 August for North Island drivers who drive inter-island services.

ENDS

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