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Tragic turn-around in 2012’s road toll - Automobile Assoc.

Media Release: 2 January 2012

Tragic turn-around in 2012’s road toll

The increase in the road toll in 2012 is both tragic and extremely disappointing, says the Automobile Association.

From the historic low of 284 deaths in 2011, there were 306 deaths on the roads in 2012.

“Fluctuations in the road toll from one year to another are not uncommon and the overall trend remains downward for deaths on the road, but it is terribly sad to have killed more people in 2012 than in the previous year,” says AA spokesperson Simon Lambourne.

“2011 was a historic year, with the lowest number of road deaths since 1952. It is tragic that we weren’t been able to at least hold at this level. Ideally the toll would have fallen further in 2012.”

“In terms of the number of fatal crashes, there wasn’t much of an increase from 2011 to 2012 but we did have more multi-fatality crashes, which have cost a lot more lives.

“2012 was a horror year for horror crashes.”

“The 2012 result is even more disappointing considering the fatality free driving period in April. We had 11 straight days that month without a single death on the roads, including over the Easter long weekend. It was the first time in recorded history that we had a holiday period without a fatal road crash. The month of April ended with 11 road deaths, the lowest monthly road toll since records began.”

“We’ve seen some good progress in making our roads safer in recent times but last year shows we still have a long way to go,” says Mr Lambourne.

“Even at 2011’s historic low, New Zealand had a higher rate of road deaths proportionately than Australia and many European countries, with far too many people being killed and hurt.

“New Zealanders must not just accept these unnecessary deaths and injuries. Almost every crash is preventable. We all have to work harder to not only get people to drive safely to reduce the number of crashes , but also to improve the safety of our roads and the safety of the cars we drive so the damage from any crashes is reduced.”

ends

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