Monday, 13 February 2006 - 3:01pm |

Operation IMPACT

2 min read

Canterbury road deaths have been doubling during the months February to April for the past three years and Police are determined to prevent this continuing.

Inspector Derek Erasmus, Canterbury Traffic Manager, says that this `spike' is of concern and the operation is aimed at reducing the death total.

"Maybe we should have started this a month ago as January this year was horrific in Canterbury," he says.

Over the last three years Canterbury District has seen a spike in road deaths during the period mid February to early April. The deaths have occurred throughout the District but the State Highway network is a significant risk.
(see attached graph)

Operation Impact will run from 13 February until 26 March 2006, and will involve all Road Policing staff from Canterbury (Highway Patrol, STU, and TAG), with support at times from Southern and Tasman Highway Patrol and TAG, as well as CVIU.

Its mission is to reduce the number of fatal and injury crashes on Canterbury roads in comparison with the same period over recent years. There will be an emphasis on visibility, strict enforcement and publicity.

The operation will target all forms of bad driving and bad motoring practice including speed, alcohol, intersections, restraints, licence breaches and general driver behaviour.

"A zero tolerance philosophy should be followed for all trauma promoting offences, and speed tolerance policy should be strictly complied with," says Inspector Erasmus. "Heavy motor vehicles will be specifically targeted for restraints and general driver behaviour. Cyclists will be targeted with particular emphasis on behaviour at intersections and safety helmet compliance."

Restraints: Every vehicle stopped is to be checked to see that all occupants are wearing seat belts. Infringement notices, as opposed to warnings, will be issued to offenders.

Speed: Infringement notices should be issued for all speeds checked at more than 10 km/h over the limit, except within 250 metres of a school boundary in the periods before and after school, and all heavy motor vehicles, in which cases the tolerance is 5 km/h.

Trauma Promoting Offences: Particular attention is to be paid to the following "high risk" manoeuvres carried out by drivers:
• crossing the centre line / failing to keep left,
• overtaking and crossing over "no passing" lines,
• overtaking another vehicle with insufficient clear road ahead,
• following too close,
• failing to stop / give way at intersections.

Offending drivers will be stopped and notices issued, says Derek Erasmus.

Other initiatives taking place as part of the operation include:

• alcohol checkpoints utilising the combined resources of TAG from the three South Island Districts,
• fatigue checkpoints involving Highway Patrol staff, being run in conjunction with ACC,
• CVIU carrying out targeted speed and restraint enforcement on heavy motor vehicles and working alongside TAG at alcohol checkpoints to deal with commercial operators.

For further information please contact
Senior Sergeant Neville Hyland, Canterbury Highway Patrol