Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search


UC Researcher Says Time To Review Vehicle Testing Governance

UC Researcher Says Time To Review The Governance System For Vehicle Testing in NZ

February 5, 2013

A University of Canterbury UC) researcher says it might be time to review the governance system for vehicle testing in New Zealand to achieve better road safety with less vehicle testing.

A Ministry of Transport report shows New Zealand motorists drive a car that is on average 13 years old and face road-testing more often than drivers in other countries.

A UC management expert Dr Pavel Castka says vehicle testing does not significantly impact on road fatalities.

``The issue is not the frequency of testing but the quality and consistency of testing. There are so many firms that provide warrant of fitness tests. Are they really consistent? Is the stringency of the system being maintained?

``I do not have the data from New Zealand, yet the research in the US has shown that the increased competition in vehicle testing - and increased number of entities that provide vehicle testing - led to a more lenient system over time. So maybe, it is a time to review the governance system for vehicle testing in New Zealand to achieve better road safety with less vehicle testing.’’

Another UC lecturer who researches transport, Dr Glen Koorey, said New Zealand has a culture of not valuing the importance of road safety.

``What other industry in the country allows you to routinely kill 400 people a year and barely raise an eyelid? Meanwhile, we’re planning to spend $12 billion on motorways to attempt to address congestion that supposedly costs us less than $2 billion a year, while we invest a pittance each year on road safety that costs this country over $4 billion each year,’’ Dr Koorey said.

He said older cars have an effect on the survivability of any crash. Modern cars had features such as airbags and crumple zones that allowed some people to almost walk away from a serious collision.

A 1999 model car would behave quite differently to a 2009 model of the same car. Therefore, encouraging people to upgrade to newer, safer cars paid important dividends, more so than frequent maintenance checks, he said.

``Motor vehicle faults themselves contribute a very small proportion to the total number of crashes – three percent of crashes have some contribution by vehicles. Most are a consequence of driver behaviour or mistakes, or a poor or misleading road environment.

``In the bigger scheme of things, a change of a few vehicle-related crashes here and there are negligible within the thousands of serious crashes we have every year. If the year-2000 cut-off means that many people switch to a newer car model then the injury savings from that will far outweigh any increases from a reduced testing regime for modern cars.

``People would also easily recoup any losses by introducing other proven road safety treatments from overseas such as lowering the drink drive limit or introducing more lower speed zones,’’ Dr Koorey said.


© Scoop Media

Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines


Scoop Review Of Books: Worldly And Unworldly

"Being Magdalene" by Fleur Beale The situations shown in this youth novel are shocking, scary, and very moving as we experience Magdalene’s struggle to be a perfect girl as defined by the cruel and unreasonable leader of “The Children of the Faith”, as she moves reluctantly into young womanhood. More>>

Whistle Stop: Netball NZ To Implement New INF Rules

Netball New Zealand (NNZ) will implement the new Official Rules of Netball, as set down by the International Netball Federation (INF), from January 1, 2016. Key changes include the elimination of whistle following a goal, amendments to injury time and changes to setting a penalty. More>>


Scoop Review Of Books: Waiata Aroha

Vaughan Rapatahana on Chappy by Patricia Grace: With this eminently readable novel Patricia Grace returns to the full-length fiction stage after a hiatus of ten years. More>>

'Ithaca' At Q Theatre: Introducing NZ's World Class Cirque Troupe

NZ’s very own cirque troupe is set to become a household name with the premier of its adaptation of Homer’s Odyssey having secured a key season in Auckland. More>>

Music Awards: The Tuis Are Broody This Year

Topping off a sensationally eventful year both at home and internationally, Nelson born brother-sister duo Broods has taken home four Tuis from this year’s 50th annual Vodafone New Zealand Music Awards. More>>


Sport: Richie McCaw Retires From Rugby

Richie McCaw has today confirmed he is hanging up his boots and retiring from professional rugby. The 34-year-old All Blacks captain and most capped All Black of all time has drawn the curtain on his stunning international career which started in Dublin 14 years ago, almost to the day, and ended in London last month when he hoisted the Webb Ellis Cup aloft for the second time. More>>


John McBeth: On Jonah Lomu

For many New Zealanders, the enormity of Jonah Lomu's reputation will have come as a surprise... His deeds were watched and enthused over by movie stars and musicians, politicians and superstars from other codes. He reached into the lives and homes of millions and mixed with famous people most New Zealanders would only have read about. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news