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404 killed on New Zealand roads in 2005

Media Statement
For immediate release
1 January 2006

404 killed on New Zealand roads in 2005

Four-hundred and four people died on New Zealand roads last year – thirty one fewer than in 2004 and the lowest yearly road toll since 1963, when there were 394 road deaths.

There have been nearly 5,000 deaths and 137,000 injuries from crashes on our roads over the past 10 years.

More than 34,000 people have been killed on the road since New Zealand's first known fatal crash in Christchurch in 1908. The deadliest year on our roads was 1973, when 843 were killed.

As recently as 1990 there were 729 road deaths in New Zealand. Since then annual road deaths have dropped by nearly 45 percent, in spite of a 38 percent increase in the number of vehicles on the road and a 20 percent increase in population.

Government has set a target of no more than 300 road deaths and no more than 4,500 hospitalisations per year by 2010.

Preliminary analysis shows that driving too fast for the conditions and drink-driving were the two biggest factors in fatal crashes last year, with excessive speed a factor in 32 percent and drink-driving contributing to 29 percent. Twenty-three percent of the vehicle occupants killed last year were not wearing seatbelts.

A table with historical road crash statistics and fatality rates follows this statement.

New Zealand Road Deaths Data, 1990-2005

Deaths per:
Year Road Deaths Population (million) Vehicles (million) 100,000 population 10,000 vehicles 100m vehicle km travelled
1990 729 3.4104 2.1977 21.4 3.3 2.6
1991 650 3.4497 2.2201 18.8 2.9 2.2
1992 646 3.4854 2.2271 18.5 2.9 2.2
1993 600 3.5248 2.2438 17.0 2.7 2.0
1994 580 3.5772 2.2893 16.2 2.5 1.8
1995 582 3.6432 2.3546 16.0 2.5 1.8
1996 514 3.7174 2.3798 13.8 2.2 1.5
1997 539 3.7611 2.3927 14.3 2.3 1.5
1998 501 3.7909 2.4404 13.2 2.1 1.4
1999 508 3.8107 2.5123 13.3 2.0 1.4
2000 462 3.8308 2.6017 12.1 1.8 1.2
2001 455 3.8501 2.6332 11.8 1.7 1.3
2002 405 3.9391 2.7095 10.3 1.5 1.1
2003 461 4.0092 2.8010 11.5 1.6 1.2
2004 435 4.0609 2.9207 10.7 1.5 N/A
2005 404 4.0983 3.0304 9.9 1.3 1.0


ENDS

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