Police urge caution during holiday weekend

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Police are urging motorists to take care on Bay of Plenty roads this Labour Weekend to avoid a repeat of last year's fatality.

One person died on Western Bay roads during the 2011 Labour Weekend holiday period.

Police in Bay of Plenty District are hoping every single person makes it to their destination safely this year and are urging motorists to check their vehicles, factor plenty of time into their travel plans and drive to the conditions.

Historically the number of injury crashes actually decrease by approximately 10 percent during the Labour Weekend period. However the proportion of those crashes that result in fatalities and serious injuries rise.

The official holiday period begins at 4pm on Friday and continues through to 6am on Tuesday.

During this period there will be an inevitable increase in traffic on the roads matched by an increase in police visibility and patrols.

Nationally during the holiday weekends police operate a stricter tolerance on speed.

Bay of Plenty District Police road policing manager Inspector Kevin Taylor said: "We are expecting a mix bag of weather over the weekend and if the circumstances and the conditions dictate then police will consider enforcement action based on those circumstances.

"The best advice is consider the speed limit for what it is; a limit and not a target, and drive to the conditions. If we didn't issue a single ticket, because everyone drove responsibly and arrived safely at their destination I would be very happy man."|

General tips to help your holiday trip run smoothly.

Have your car serviced or at least do some basic maintenance checks - oil, water, wiper blades and tyres. Most tyre companies will provide pressure checks, top-ups and puncture repairs for free.

Map out your route.

Check the weather and road conditions and drive to those conditions.

Have a full tank of fuel and on a long trip work out in advance where you intend to re-fuel. Remember not all service stations are open 24hrs.

Don't just re-fuel your vehicle. Take regular rest breaks. New Zealand has a great cafe coffee culture so make the most of it. Keep bottled water in the vehicle to ensure you stay hydrated.

Make sure there is plenty to keep children occupied. Bored and restless children are a distraction and can stress a driver.

Keep an emergency pack to hand with water, snacks, warm clothing and a first aid kit in case or a breakdown. If you have a mobile phone make sure it is fully charged for an emergency but remember it is now against the law to use it while driving.



- Bay of Plenty Times

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