5 Oct 2015

Right side of road driving all wrong, admits Tourism NZ

1:10 pm on 5 October 2015

Tourism New Zealand say a promotional video showing a campervan driving on the wrong side of the road was an "unfortunate mistake."

The video, which was removed from YouTube this afternoon, showed a white campervan driving on the right side of the road.

A camper van is seen driving on the wrong side of the road in a Tourism New Zealand video.

A camper van is seen driving on the wrong side of the road in a Tourism New Zealand video. Photo: YouTube

The video, called New Zealand - the Ultimate Road Trip, was made by American videographer Devin Super Tramp and has been viewed more than 317,000 times.

A Tourism New Zealand spokesperson said the footage of the campervan was "an unfortunate mistake that we are seeking to rectify."

"The content was produced by a visiting videographer who flipped the footage when editing the piece.

"Tourism New Zealand is taking all steps it can to keep visitors safe on our roads so are extremely disappointed in this oversight," she said in a statement.

AA urges agency to act now

The Automobile Association had urged Tourism New Zealand to urgently fix the video or take it down.

Spokesman Liam Baldwin said while the video was clearly a mistake, it was unhelpful to show the wrong road rules to potential tourists.

"A lot of work is going on behind the scenes to ensure that when people arrive in New Zealand they are aware of the road rules so this isn't that helpful so the sooner it can be fixed the better," Mr Baldwin said.

"It's great to see New Zealand being sold in this way to potential visitors but we need to be able to sell it in the right way and depict the right rules."

Tourists driving on the wrong side of the road has been an issue in parts of the country and Mr Baldwin said a lot of work has been put into ensuring that visitors were aware of the road rules.

Tourist deaths an ongoing concern

There have been several crashes this year involving tourists who have driven on the wrong side of the road.

A Chinese tourist driver was jailed for 18 months in June for killing a five-year-old Oamaru girl in a crash in February.

Jing Cao's car was on the wrong side of the road when it collided head-on with the Marris family's vehicle, causing the death of Ruby Marris and seriously injuring others.