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Police are urging drivers to take care on Western Bay of Plenty roads over the Labour Weekend holiday period.
Nationally during Labour Weekend in 2011 there were 8 deaths and 70 reported injury crashes.
Western Bay of Plenty recorded 1 road death and several injury crashes.
The most common causes of crashes over last Labour Weekend were alcohol, poor observation and judgement, speed (including too fast for the conditions), inattention and failing to give way.
Drivers can expect to experience heavy traffic flows with the build up to Labour Weekend which will worsen should we experience inclement weather conditions.
Senior Sergeant Ian Campion says drivers need to reduce speeds, respect following distances, drive to the conditions and be patient taking extra care during overtaking manoeuvres.
Holiday driving requires special care, consideration, concentration and planning. It’s important that drivers give themselves plenty of time to make their journey safely, take regular breaks and ensure everyone in the vehicle is wearing their seat belt or properly restrained in an approved child restraint.
Truck drivers and drivers of light vehicles towing trailers or caravans will need to take extra special care during periods of heavy traffic volume ensuring they drive to the conditions, secure loads properly and regularly pull over to allow faster traffic to overtake.
Police will be out in force over the Labour Weekend Holiday period to ensure that:
Traffic flows run smoothly and delays are kept to a minimum;
Slower drivers are encouraged to pull over to let faster traffic pass;
Those who engage in high-risk driver behaviour that puts other road users at risk, including speeding, are apprehended.
Senior Sergeant Campion confirmed a speed limit tolerance of 4km/h will be in force over the holiday weekend and warned that drivers exceeding any speed limit by more than the tolerance can expect to be fined and accrue demerit points.
Drivers exceeding any posted speed limit by more than 40km/h will have their drivers licence suspended immediately for a period of 28 days and police will also be enforcing driver licence suspensions and vehicle impoundments for drink driver caught exceeding breath or blood alcohol levels.
The Traffic Alcohol Group and Booze Bus will be deployed and drivers can expect to be breath tested anytime anywhere.
Road safety is everyone’s responsibility and Ian urges drivers to make Western Bay of Plenty roads safe this Labour Weekend and make the weekend one to remember for the right reasons.