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Auckland crash triggers start of Christmas holiday road toll

Detective Inspector Scott Beard says an innocent man lost his life after a horror hit-and-run in Auckland on Saturday morning. An early-morning hit-and-run in central Auckland has triggered the start of the Christmas holiday road death toll. A taxi driver was killed after a drink-driver ran a red light and smashed into a Toyota Prius on Symonds St around 4:45am on Saturday.[1]

The driver of a black Mercedes fled the scene with his passenger but was soon arrested by police nearby.

Since 2013, New Zealand's road toll has been back on the increase.

Since 2013, New Zealand’s road toll has been back on the increase. Detective Inspector Scott Beard said the taxi driver who lost his life had “nothing to do” with the horror collision. READ MORE:
* Two people flee fatal hit-and-run in Auckland
* Ali Mau: Heartbreaking loss of young drivers a wake-up call
* Police enforce tougher speed tolerance for Christmas[2][3][4]

The holiday road toll period officially began at 4pm on Friday and runs until 6am on January 3. One person was killed and two people fled the scene in central Auckland but were later located by police. The number of fatalities on New Zealand roads for the entire year stands at 370 – an increase of 43 from 2016’s grim tally of 327.

With nine days to go, and with more people travelling on New Zealand’s roads across the festive period, that figure is expected to rise even further before the year is out. Police have enforced a stricter speed limit tolerance of 4kmh for the holidays.[5]

The driver of a Toyota Prius was killed after the early-morning hit-and-run in Auckland.NICOLE LAWTON/STUFF

The driver of a Toyota Prius was killed after the early-morning hit-and-run in Auckland. On Monday, Police Minister Stuart Nash said drivers needed to use common sense and take regular breaks during long summer journeys.

Ad Feedback[6]

Road safety campaigner Clive Matthew-Wilson said rigid enforcement of speed limits had not helped bring the road toll down.

“For years, the police have been telling us that rigid enforcement of speed limits would lower the road toll. In fact, it’s gone up,” he said. Motorists who persistently drove drunk or high, and did not wear seatbelts, were the main culprits and it was time police focused their efforts on that small group, he added.

Citing Ministry of Transport research[7], he said speed was not the issue as 85 per cent of road deaths happened below the speed limit.

“Of the 15 per cent of accidents that occur above the speed limit, almost all are caused by either yobbos, impaired drivers or outlaw motorcyclists.”

– Stuff

References

  1. ^ A taxi driver was killed after a drink-driver ran a red light and smashed into a Toyota Prius on Symonds St around 4:45am on Saturday. (www.stuff.co.nz)
  2. ^ Two people flee fatal hit-and-run in Auckland (www.stuff.co.nz)
  3. ^ Ali Mau: Heartbreaking loss of young drivers a wake-up call (www.stuff.co.nz)
  4. ^ Police enforce tougher speed tolerance for Christmas (www.stuff.co.nz)
  5. ^ Police have enforced a stricter speed limit tolerance of 4kmh for the holidays. (www.stuff.co.nz)
  6. ^ Ad Feedback (stuff.co.nz)
  7. ^ research (www.transport.govt.nz)



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