Silly law?

NZ Performance Car - - Nzpc Team -

Close calls with the law and speed­ing seem to go hand in hand, and I’m sure many of us have had a few speed­ing tick­ets in our time. In the end we’re left at the road­side know­ing that we were be­ing stupid, and we stop get­ting so over­board with it. How­ever the re­cent in­tro­duc­tion of what was re­ported as zero tol­er­ance for speed­ers over the sum­mer pe­riod left many of us wor­ried that we would be caught out due to speedo in­ac­cu­racy, or via in­ad­ver­tent creep when over­tak­ing slower-trav­el­ling traf­fic. But it turns out only a re­ported 14 tick­ets were is­sued na­tion­wide within a zero to 4kph speed tol­er­ance range dur­ing the hol­i­day pe­riod, bring­ing into ques­tion the ef­fec­tive­ness of a cam­paign which had mo­torists up in arms. Af­ter much con­fu­sion over what the changed tol­er­ance was, it turns out driv­ers were ac­tu­ally al­lowed a lee­way of 4kph, though po­lice could fine you if you were 1kph over the limit.

The big­gest is­sue with the re­duced speed limit was that our hol­i­day-pe­riod death toll was the high­est it’s been since 2011–’12, and this year we’re up by 10 deaths over the pre­vi­ous Christ­mas pe­riod. I’m all for low­er­ing the road toll and as­sess­ing Ki­wis as driv­ers, but you can’t just fo­cus the blame for the road toll on speed­ing. We need fur­ther re­search, and even a look at in­ter­est­ing case stud­ies from abroad to un­der­stand what mo­ti­vates deaths on the road, and how to ef­fec­tively re­duce that num­ber. Maybe with fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion to bet­ter iden­tify the driv­ing habits of those dy­ing, we could cre­ate a sys­tem that pre­vents more deaths. Un­til then, stick to the law, and hope your speedo’s not too far out.

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