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Giving lines companies priority in an emergency

22 January 2020

A Members Bill that will allow lines company vehicles to use flashing lights when responding to electrical emergencies, requiring traffic to give them priority, has been drafted by National’s Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown.

“Congestion across New Zealand, particularly in Auckland, is making it difficult for lines companies to respond to electrical emergencies quickly when someone’s life is in danger.

“When power lines are brought down by a car crash, Fire and Ambulance responders often arrive in a hurry but can’t assist until the lines company shows up to disconnect the power.

“Lines company workers are often stuck on the motorway or in traffic caused by the crash. In Auckland, a car crash involving a power pole takes place every day, on average.

“There are also cases where people are dependent on electrical machines to keep them alive, and if the power is cut off then any delays getting it reconnected can be the difference between life and death.

“This bill will give vehicles responding to these type of electrical emergencies the ability to display a flashing light, which would require other vehicles to give way to them as they do for doctors, midwives, and some nurses.

“I have written to the Minister of Transport requesting his support for this proposed new law. I hope we can work together to make this sensible change.”


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