An incensed Dunedin man took car keys from a tourist who had stopped to take photos on Otago Peninsula, causing eight vehicles to back up on the narrow road.

View our infographic: Where NZ's crashes happen

It is at least the fifth time a driver has taken the keys off an overseas tourist in recent weeks, with police urging the public not to take matters into their own hands.

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Editorial: When Kiwis take the law into their own hands, something is seriously wrong


In the latest incident, Robert Penman took the the keys off a foreign driver because "I've been in a head-on crash before and I don't want to be in another one".

"When you see the near misses on a daily basis ... well, you've just got to do something."

The Otago Peninsula resident saw a rental car parked in the middle of the southbound lane of Highcliff Rd on Saturday afternoon.

Eight cars were soon backed up behind the parked vehicle while the occupants took photos of the Otago Peninsula.

Mr Penman said it was not safe to pass and tried tooting several times.

Eventually, the couple went back to their car and drove on at 20km/h.

The rental car later turned into a driveway, with Mr Penman and his son getting out of their vehicle to block their eventual exit.

By that stage, he had rung police.

The pair watched as the man and his female passenger changed seats and then she drove towards them with the handbrake on.

The male tourist then got out of the rental car and "started pushing me".

"When he started to push me, I went around to the driver's side and grabbed the keys, and I said 'you are not going anywhere'."

Mr Penman said the tourist then accused him of trying to steal his vehicle, and "I said you have been dangerous driving and I am giving the keys to police".

Southern District acting road policing manager Senior Sergeant Steve Larking said police spoke to both parties, with the visiting driver given information about where to park safely, while Mr Penman was told to "calm down".

No infringement notices were issued.

Mr Penman said he had made frequent complaints to police before about dangerous driving on the road.

"It is no different from taking the keys off a drunk driver in a pub car park."

Rental driver charged after crash death

The tourist driver of a rented people mover that crashed and killed one person has been charged with careless driving causing death and careless driving causing injury.

The 39-year-old female Taiwanese visitor was driving with six family members in the car when the crash happened at a stop sign-controlled intersection of Jones Rd and Dawsons Rd in Templeton, south of Christchurch, on February 18.

The woman will appear at the Christchurch District Court today. Police investigations are ongoing.