New Zealand's road toll is standing at 98, a life claimed for every day of the year so far.

The latest sobering statistic has being described as a "tragedy" by the Ministry of Transport.

At the same time last year there were 13 fewer deaths, with the road toll at 85.


The ministry's Land Transport Safety manager Brent Johnston said the grim toll could be averted by drivers heeding a number of safety measures once behind the wheel.

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"Every death and serious injury on our roads is a tragedy," he said.

"We can help keep ourselves, our passengers and others safe by wearing seatbelts, driving at an appropriate speed within the speed limit, driving sober, taking rest breaks when necessary, and being considerate of other road users."

According to Ministry of Transport statistics 33 people died from road crashes in each of the first two months of this year, with a further 26 lives lost in road accidents last month.

Last year 320 people died on New Zealand roads as the toll continued to track upwards from a record 60-year low of 253 deaths in 2013.