High-risk drivers remain a road safety concern   28 May 2012

The latest report on the impact of high risk drivers shows these drivers remain a major worry on our roads, Associate Transport Minister Simon Bridges says at the launch of a ‘Ghost Chips’ billboard at Western Heights High School in Rotorua today.

 The Ministry of Transport report shows that between 2006 and 2010, 620 people were killed in crashes where high-risk drivers were at fault. The report defines high-risk drivers as those with previous speed and alcohol offences, or who engage in high-risk behaviour (for example, driving with a high blood alcohol content or illegal street racing) at the time of the crash.

 “All drivers can make mistakes, and it is important that everyone take responsibility for their actions on the road, no matter what their driving history. But this information shows that there is a subset of drivers whose reckless actions remain a cause of many road deaths and injuries,” says Mr Bridges.

 “Most high-risk drivers are male (84 per cent) and young (54 per cent under 30 years old). This information will prove useful for future targeted road safety campaigns.

 “High risk drivers are a priority in the Government’s Safer Journeys road safety strategy. We are taking steps to reduce the impact caused by this core of problem drivers.

 “As part of our actions aimed at reducing the impact of this group, the government has doubled the prison penalties for dangerous drivers who cause death. We have also made decisions to introduce alcohol interlocks and a zero alcohol limit for repeat drink drivers, as well as progressing actions across the road system that can help reduce road crashes and the damage they cause when they do occur.

 “In addition to Safer Journeys actions, last year the Government announced a $10 million per year investment package to increase access to alcohol and other drug treatment. $1 million of this is dedicated to fund programmes for drink-drivers and is estimated to achieve up to a 9 per cent reduction in repeat drink driving for 1,400 drink-drivers a year.”

 The report and a Q&A are available at:

http://www.transport.govt.nz/research/Pages/Highriskdriversstatistics.aspx

(New Zealand Government)


 


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