Thursday, 7 December 2023 - 11:58am |

Excuses, excuses: New Police campaign no laughing matter

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When it comes to speeding our Highway Patrol officers have heard it all, literally.

From stuck jandals to stressed out dogs, lead foot motorists have tried just about every excuse in the book to get out of a speeding fine.

Summer’s here, and as part of our continued effort to remind drivers there is no excuse to speed, Police are highlighting the worst, and most wild, excuses for speeding road policing staff in each district have come across.

In Eastern District, officers stopped a driver for speeding and when asked why, they told Police they were late for a tangi.

Another driver told officers in Raupunga she “didn’t feel safe travelling through this area and wanted to get through as quickly as I could”.

For one unlucky motorist the excuse was simple: ‘I didn’t see the speed sign – so I didn’t have any intention of speeding.’

Yeah, nah.

Eastern District Road Policing Manager, Inspector Angela Hallett, says while there is no excuse to speed, the reasons they hear on the daily are too funny not to share, but is also hoping through the humour people will realise there is a consequence to their actions.

“From ‘I thought the 90 sign meant that a safer speed for this road is 90 but you could still go 100 if you wanted’ to ‘I have to get to my friend’s place, my dog is stressing out’, our Police have heard everything,” Inspector Hallett says.

“There’s nothing funny about attending a death on our roads.

“Every opportunity we can take to reduce speeds, even by a fraction, has the potential to make a huge difference to safety on our roads.”

Inspector Hallett says officers hear the same old excuses from drivers when they’re caught speeding, time and time again.

But Police often also have to witness the horrific consequences when there’s a crash.

“’There isn’t a speed limit here, it’s a passing lane. You can go as fast as you like to overtake safely', ‘It’s not me, blame the car, it's the car’… but it’s not, it’s the driver,” she says.

“In a crash, even when you’re not at fault, speed remains the single biggest factor in whether you and your passengers walk away or are carried away.

“It’s simple: less speed means less harm.

“We want you to get to your destination, so slow down, drive to the speed limit and drive to the conditions. And know that you can expect to see Police out on the roads – anytime and anywhere.”


Holly McKay/NZ Police