Police blitz: 106kmh in a 50km zone


A Whangarei woman who lost her licence for allegedly driving at 106km/h in a 50km zone in Onerahi was one of many people in the region affected by a Queen's Birthday weekend road-policing blitz.

Northland road policing manager Inspector Murray Hodson said the highway patrol had a busy weekend on the region's roads.

The blitz involved the largest police presence recorded on Northland roads. They targeted alcohol, seatbelts, cell-phone usage, dangerous driving, slow drivers and crossing the centre line.

Motorists travelling at more than 4km over the posted speed limit were ticketed if stopped by police. Five speed-camera operators were also rostered on to keep speeding drivers in check.

Mr Hodson said traffic from Friday afternoon until about 9pm was extremely heavy in the region and kept his staff busy. He was pleased with the way the operation went.

More than 20 motorists were caught with excess breath alcohol levels during the campaign.

The highest figure was recorded when a Whangarei woman was pulled over in Kamo and allegedly had a breath-alcohol reading of 1370 micrograms. That was more than three times the 400mcg adult limit.

"That is an extremely high reading that shows a complete disregard for her safety and the safety of others," Mr Hodson said.

The woman, 42, was pulled over shortly after 10.55pm, when a community patrol member called police after reporting the car swerving across Kamo Rd.

Mr Hodson said people were still not getting the message.

"These high-risk drivers need to be taken off our roads."

Any driver caught with a reading over the legal limit of 400mcg of alcohol per litre of breath and who had a previous drink-driving conviction would have their licence confiscated for 28 days. If the driver had more than one conviction and blew a reading over 400mcg per litre of breath, they would lose their licence and vehicle.

Two road crashes occurred in the Mid North on Sunday evening, the first on State Highway 10, north of Waipapa, near Stanners Rd.

Kerikeri chief fire officer Les Wasson said the occupants of the vehicle in the first accident were not seriously injured. Volunteer fire officers directed traffic at the scene.

The second crash occurred when a car plunged off a bridge into a river in Paihia, about 6pm on Saturday.

At the time of edition, Mr Hodson's goal of zero fatalities and serious injury crashes had been met.

- Northern Advocate

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