5 Jan 2010

12 die on roads during holiday period

7:44 am on 5 January 2010

Twelve people have died on the roads during the official holiday period, which began on Christmas Eve and ended at 6am on Tuesday.

The provisional toll rose on Monday when a woman died in a crash on the Hibiscus Coast Highway north of Orewa, near Auckland.

Other deaths include a man who accelerated through a police checkpoint and rolled his car into a ditch in Bay of Plenty, and the death of a 16-year-old girl near Queenstown.

During the holiday period 12 months ago, 25 motorists were killed.

National road policing manager Superintendent Paula Rose told Summer Report on Tuesday that police do not think the relatively low number of deaths this holiday period is a blip.

Ms Rose says in October, November and December last year the number of road deaths were at record lows and it looks like that trend has continued.

Speed is believed to have been a factor in more than half of the deaths recorded in the official holiday period, she says.