A man caught on camera riding on a car's roof was doing the same "stupid" act that has killed two people in the Bay of Plenty in the past 10 years, says the Bay's road policing manager.
The car surfer and his driver were snapped by a motorist who followed them along Marine Parade last week.
In the photo a man is seen lying face-down on the roof of a red Mazda Familia, leaning his head over the driver's window with his feet in the air.
Police yesterday launched an investigation into the incident.
Western Bay of Plenty road policing manager Senior Sergeant Ian Campion said the behaviour was "just downright dangerous".
"We can do all that we can to keep people safe but we can't fix stupid, and that's what this is," he said.
A 17-year-old had died on November 6, 2005, on State Highway 2 south of Te Puke after falling off a car on which he was car surfing.
Five years later on February 28, 2010, another person had died on Omanu Beach after rolling off the bonnet of a car he was surfing on and was run over by the vehicle.
"It was an act of blatant stupidity and obviously it's extremely high risk," Mr Campion said.
It was disappointing, he added, to see people acting so recklessly after four lives had already been lost on Western Bay of Plenty roads during the holiday period.
"It defies belief."
Mount Maunganui Sergeant Ben Gallagher said the car in the photo had come to police attention on New Year's Day. Officers had done a number-plate check on it while it was travelling on Papamoa Beach Rd.
Western Bay of Plenty police were investigating the car surfing incident, which happened early this month.
"Police are in the process of identifying the occupants of the vehicle involved," Mr Gallagher said. "This type of behaviour is pure stupidity that can result in serious injury or death."
Police were encouraging anyone who witnessed such activity to contact police immediately.
Anyone with information regarding this particular incident can contact the Tauranga police on 07 577 4300 or anonymously by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.