We Can Do Better than This

Canterbury Road Toll Press release

46 people died on Canterbury roads during 2008. ‘This is a massive impact on Cantabrians’ said Inspector Derek Erasmus, Road Policing Manager for the District. ‘While it is 10 less than last year, which is a small blessing, the fact that so many people can be killed on our roads is a tragedy!’

In the vast majority of these crashes a driver has done something wrong with disastrous consequences. They are not accidents.’

The road toll of 46 compares with –

56 in 2007

33 in 2006

44 in 2005

40 in 2004

52 in 2003

41 in 2002

44 in 2001

32 in 2000

Canterbury Police spent the first six months of the year concentrating on seatbelt enforcement. Over 9,300 seatbelt tickets were issued in this time. During the year 10 of those killed were not wearing seatbelts as required. 9 of those would have or may have survived if they had been wearing belts. However this compares to 20 people killed in 2007 who were not wearing belts, 15 of whom would have survived if they had.

For the second 6 months of the year Canterbury Police concentrated on breath testing as many drivers as possible. Over 250,000 (106,000 in the same period in 2007) drivers were tested in this period. 6 people were killed as a result of alcohol compared to 21 in 2007.

Speed was an increasing factor in road deaths during 2007. 23 died as a result of travelling too fast for the conditions compared to 15 in 2007. Canterbury Police will be having a focus on speed during the first half of 2009.

Other issues of note were, 3 deaths were associated with mobility scooters (an aging population means this could be an increasing trend), 8 deaths were motorcycle related, and 5 had fatigue as a contributing cause. There were 7 deaths in Selwyn compared to 16 last year.

The total number of crashes reported to Canterbury Police for 2008 was  3,136 compared to 3,265 in 2007.

Inspector Erasmus is contactable after midday on 1 Jan through the Christchurch Police Operator on 363 7400.


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