21 Nov 2008

Tongans urged to change attitude to driving

2:13 pm on 21 November 2008

Tonga's Police Commander, Chris Kelley, says the country's drivers have to change their behaviour and attitude on the roads.

This follows two recent crashes that have claimed the lives of seven young people, nearly doubling the annual road toll.

Mr Kelley is promising greater enforcement but he says there is a need to realise that road safety is everyone's responsibility.

He says he will push for the compulsory use of seat belts, a more responsible approach to alcohol and for defensive driving techniques to be taught.

"I have already had some discussion with Government on the issue of defensive driving certificates. We are certainly going to talk about some of the other options we think might well be available - demerit points system, bringing in a law in relation to restraints and also further issues in relation to drinking driving and alcohol. Those sort of areas need to be revisited. It is just simply not acceptable to have 15 road deaths."

Tonga's Police Commander, Chris Kelley