News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 

July road toll near record low

LTSA online
Last month's road toll nearly equalled the record for the lowest July toll since recording began in 1965. The 34 people killed on the roads last month was one more than the all-time low, recorded in July 1979.

But while the news was encouraging for July, the overall road toll for 1999 remains slightly higher than at the same time last year - 296 people have been killed so far this year, compared to 290 in 1998.

"We're pleased at last month's low figures, but one month of good results isn't enough. We've already had six deaths in August, and the month has just begun. We want to see a consistent, long term and continuing decline in the number of people killed on our roads," said Reg Barrett, Director of Land Transport Safety.

But while there has been a slight increase in the number of road deaths over last year, there have actually been fewer fatal crashes so far this year - 247 compared to 255 in 1998. Mr Barrett said there were two main reasons why these lower crash figures weren't reflected in the road toll - an increase in fatalities on the open road and too many crashes resulting in multiple deaths.

"Over 80 percent of deaths this year have been on open roads, and we've had 12 crashes where three or more people have been killed. We lost six lives in a single crash in Taupo earlier in the year, and four teenagers died from a terrible crash in the Wairarapa to start this month," he said.

An open road is defined as one where the speed limit is 70 km/h or more. Open roads historically account for 69 percent of the road toll.

Mr Barrett said another concerning trend was the increasing road toll for older drivers - 73 people over the age of 60 have been killed on the roads so far this year, an increase of 20 road deaths from the same time last year for this age group.

Head-on crashes also continue to be a major contributor to the road toll, accounting for nearly 40 percent of deaths so far this year.

Mr Barrett said people had to use common sense and follow the basic road rules. "Drive to the conditions and slow down on the open road. Don't drink then drive. Wear your safety belt. And keep to your own side of the road. These are simple rules, but they save lives."

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

ASB Classic: Serena Williams Confirmed For 2020

One of the biggest names in sport has confirmed she will be returning to the ASB Classic in 2020. Twenty-three time Grand Slam singles champion Serena Williams will return to Auckland’s ASB Tennis Arena to challenge for the ASB Classic title. More>>

Netball: Taurua To Coach Silver Ferns Through Two More Campaigns

Netball New Zealand has confirmed Taurua will guide the Silver Ferns as they take on the Australian Diamonds in October’s Cadbury Netball Series (Constellation Cup), along with the Northern Quad Series in late January. More>>

ALSO:

Bigger But Less Novel Than The Parrot: Giant Fossil Penguin Find

The discovery of Crossvallia waiparensis, a monster penguin from the Paleocene Epoch (between 66 and 56 million years ago), adds to the list of gigantic, but extinct, New Zealand fauna. These include the world’s largest parrot, a giant eagle, giant burrowing bat, the moa and other giant penguins. More>>

Wellington: Little Blue Penguins Near Station Again

There have been more sightings of penguins near Wellington Railway Station on Sunday night, this time waddling into a parking building above a burger restaurant. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland