Three Northland crash hotspots where speed has been identified as a contributing factor are coming under police heat.

Officers this month have paid particular attention to the sites - two in Whangārei and one in Kaitaia - with officers using patrols cars kitted out with speed radars and handheld speed radars to pin point drivers exceeding the 50km/h speed limit.

The close police scrutiny at these sites will continue until the end of the month.

Head of the operation Inspector Wayne Ewers said some analysis on crashes, looking at times and days of the week and a number of speed related crashes over a four-year period identified the high-risk stretches of road.


In Whangārei the Kensington and Western Hills Dr areas proved dangerous, generally on weekdays between 3pm and 4pm and then again from 8pm to 11pm. The statistics showed there were 17 speed related crashes over the last four years.

Raumanga was the second area where there were seven crashes over the same period.

Those crashes happened on weekends between 5pm and 7pm.

In Kaitaia the suburban Redan Rd proved to be where most crashes occurred.

While there had been some major road safety works done on Western Hills Dr, including a roundabout and roadside guard rails, that did not stop crashes from happening.

"They are great improvements but they will only reduce the chance of being injured. The old saying 'the faster you go, the bigger the mess' still rings true," Ewers said.

Motorists could expect to see officer on the side of the road with hand held radar machines that can lock on to a vehicle 500m away and record the speed.

Meanwhile, officers yesterday noticed a car failed to move away from traffic lights at the intersection of Western Hills Dr and Kamo Rd when the lights were green.


The driver was breath tested and recorded a breath alcohol level of about 1200 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath - well over the limit for drivers aged 20 and over of 250 micrograms. He is to appear in the Whangārei District Court.

The region's road toll currently stands at 19 with seven of the fatal crashes involving speed as a contributing factor.