Nineteen people lost their lives on New Zealand roads over the Christmas and New Year period. The youngest victim was 2-years-old.

The official holiday road toll ended at 6am today. It began on Friday, December 23.

Last year's holiday road toll saw 12 people killed on New Zealand roads, with 71 people seriously injured and 296 minor injuries, according to the Ministry of Transport.

The worst road toll was during the 1972-73 holiday period, when 37 people died.


This year's toll rose to 19 when Tongan woman Leotisia Malakai, 55, died in hospital on Sunday following a bus crash on Christmas Eve in Gisborne.

Malakai was among a group from Mailefihi Siu'ilikutapu College who were in the country with their brass band to help raise funds for their school.

Two others - Talita Moimoi Fifita, 33, and 11-year-old student Sione Taumalolo - were also killed in the crash.

The youngest victim this year was 2-year-old Tyler Te Ruru Ahurei Davis, who died in a driveway accident in Te Kauwhata on Boxing Day.

The little girl was killed on a public driveway, which meant the death is included in the official road toll.

The first fatality of this year's holiday period was 83-year-old Myung Wha Lim, who died after being struck by a car in Takapuna on December 23.

National road policing manager Steve Greally said earlier the high number of deaths was disappointing and devastating for families.

"It's horrific.


"What's meant to be a festive and family time have been completely shattered by these accidents.''