Transport Minister Steven Joyce says the number of serious injuries from road crashes remains stubbornly high - even as fatality levels fall.
The number of deaths on the roads last year was the second lowest since 1960.
But Mr Joyce says the number of people seriously injured in road accidents remain stubbornly high, with little real reduction in 10 years.
He says that as cars become safer there appear to be fewer fatalities from accidents, but more serious injuries.
He says accident numbers need to keep dropping if injury levels are to do the same. He says dealing with this is a big task.
The Government is working on a strategy to improve road safety through to 2020 and will issue the plan in February.
It will not include the previous government's pledge to cut road deaths to 300 by the end of this year, which is now seen as unrealistic.