What a difference a week can make on Northland roads with the arrival of wet weather trebling the number of reported crashes over a 24 hour period.
During the 24 hour period from 1.15pm on Wednesday to yesterday there were 18 crashes reported to police in the wet conditions and for the same time period for the previous week in drier weather there were just six reported crashes in the region.
Senior Sergeant Steve Dickson said the arrival of wet weather had contributed to a number of crashes yesterday most of which resulted in only minor injuries.
"The numbers illustrate the change in conditions and also a change in season, with autumn now here. The weather and damp conditions will continue to change over the next few weeks so we want people to consciously think about how they approach the changing road conditions every time they get in a vehicle to drive," Dickson said.
And of course there were the simple safety measures every driver could employ including reducing speeding and increasing following distances in the wet.
"Safe travel doesn't just happen by luck," Dickson said.
In one of the crashes yesterday morning a stolen vehicle failed to take a corner on Whangārei Heads Rd and flipped into a ditch. Police said another following motorist collected the driver of the crashed vehicle.
Officers continued to investigate and asked for any witnesses to the crash about 8.30am to contact police through Crimestoppers or the non emergency 105 line.
Another morning crash on Station Rd, Kamo, involved a car and a bus with the car driver reporting minor injuries. Investigations into the collision are continuing.
In the afternoon four tourists involved in a two-car crash near Hukerenui were taken to the local station by a Hikurangi officer, with their rental car to be towed later on.
What should I do on the road if wet?
* Drive slower than you normally would – it only takes a split second to lose control in wet conditions
* Avoid sudden braking or turning movements that could cause you to skid
* Accelerate smoothly and brake gently
* Use your highest gear when travelling uphill and your lowest downhill
* For vehicles without anti-skid braking systems, to avoid skidding or sliding pump the brake pedal in short rapid bursts rather than pressing long and hard
* Drive at a safe travelling distance because it takes longer to stop on slippery roads. In winter, especially in poor weather, double the two-second rule and leave a safe distance between you and the car you're following
* When travelling in fog, rain or snow, drive with your lights dipped for increased safety
Source : NZ Transport Agency