Remember road safety this ANZAC Day


With the school holidays winding down and Anzac Day this Thursday (25 April), NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi (NZTA) and Police are encouraging people travelling on the roads to build in plenty of time and drive well rested.

NZTA Road Safety Manager Fabian Marsh says with the public holiday coinciding with the last weekend of April and a gradual change in season it’s especially important for people to drive to the conditions.

“We want you to get to your friends and whānau safely. When you’re out on the roads, make sure you’re well rested, plan ahead, drive within the speed limit and don’t drink and drive.“

It’s a message Police are keen to reinforce, with many New Zealanders, particularly those in unlit rural areas, getting in their vehicles to drive in the dark to Anzac Day dawn services.

Director of Road Policing at New Zealand Police, Superintendent Steve Greally continues to urge drivers to consider the safety of others and their own when getting behind the wheel.

“Those split-second decisions when driving can put a life in the balance. That’s why it’s important not to overlook them whenever or wherever you’re travelling.

“Our officers will be on our roads to ensure drivers are driving safely. Where they detect unsafe behaviours, drivers can expect the appropriate enforcement action to be applied.

“It takes a second to either put your seatbelt on, share a taxi home or have a sober driver on hand, decide to leave that text or call alone, and slow down on the road. Any of these can be all it takes to arrive at your destination safely.”

While most road work sites will be closed down for Anzac Day there may be ongoing areas of highway where roadwork is continuing either side of the break. The NZTA Journey Planner(external link) contains the latest up to date information on road works and road conditions, including any delays or closures.

While road contractors won’t be working on Anzac Day itself, Mr Marsh says drivers should also be mindful of factoring in roadworks across the long weekend.

“Road workers are out in all weather and do their best to keep everyone moving. Be tolerant and respectful of all crew members and follow any instructions on site. They are helping to keep you safe.”

People are also encouraged to keep a close eye on the weather forecasts before starting their journeys. Check for updates here: link)

Key tips for travelling over the holidays include:

  • Check your vehicle is safe to drive – even if you did before you left for the holiday break. Check your tyres, wipers, lights, indicators, spare tyre.
  • Drive to the conditions - whether it’s the weather, the road you’re on, the time of day or the volume of traffic on the roads.
  • Make sure everyone does up their seat belt after a break outside the car.
  • Keep a safe following distance from vehicles in front so you can stop safely. Share the driving if possible.
  • People towing caravans and boats need to ensure their roadworthiness before attaching them to the tow bar. Stack heavy items toward the front to balance the load and remember the speed limit is 90km/h for towing vehicles. Pull over frequently and let queues pass when safe to do so.