New Zealand holiday road toll at 26-year low

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Wednesday, January 3, 2007

The New Zealand Christmas holiday road toll has been the lowest it has ever been with nine deaths in 26-years, 1981.

The annual road toll is also the lowest it has ever been since 1963, with 387 deaths for the whole of 2006.

The Christmas holiday period starts at 4:00 p.m. (UTC+13) on Christmas Eve and runs until 6:00 a.m. January 3, 2007.

John McLelland, national road policing inspector, said: "I'd like to think that people are taking more care when travelling and hopefully with the advertising...people are more aware of the consequences of poor decision making if they are involved in a crash." Mr McLelland is starting to think that drivers are concentrating more but still believes that drivers are speeding, not wearing compulsory seat-belts and drinking and driving. He is also urging drivers to take care of both themselves and the other road users. "...we need to think about our driving and how we go about it on the road."

Mr McLelland, said: "Drivers aged 25 to 60 made up the majority of road crash fatalities. And that's also probably got something to do with the aging population as well."

Even though the holiday period is over, Mr McLelland is still asking drivers to be cautious as many people will be returning home from their holidays.

In 2006 the holiday road toll was 22, and in 2005 the toll was at 11.

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