Feathers flew when ducks crossing the road caused a crash.

Whanganui police said when a driver stopped for ducks crossing the road in front of them, the driver in the vehicle behind was unable to stop in time and their car crashed into the back of the front car.

It was one of 36 crashes Whanganui police attended and investigated in October.

Sergeant Damon Evans said drivers needed to maintain a safe following distance.

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"You should give yourself space to react if something goes wrong on the road ahead and be able to stop short if need be. Following distances are more important on the open road where speeds are greater," Evans said.

"These crashes can be avoided with a little bit more care and less speed. Even when speed doesn't cause the crash, it is the single biggest determinant in whether anyone is killed, injured, or walks away unharmed.

The driver of this car was unable to stop in time for a car in front. Photo / Supplied
The driver of this car was unable to stop in time for a car in front. Photo / Supplied

"A small change in speed makes a big difference to injury severity in a crash – for you and everyone else involved."

Evans, whose monthly crash summaries have been appearing in the Chronicle, said there were also a number of crashes involving only one vehicle where the driver lost control and ended up going off the road either into a ditch or through a nearby fence.

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He said Whanganui police would be focusing on speeding drivers this month, who risked not only fines, but demerit points. Anyone caught speeding doing over 40km/h over the posted speed limit would instantly have their driver licence suspended.

Evans also said that as we gear up for more barbecues and work social events, revellers should plan their trips home and not drink and drive.

"In at least four of the October crashes in Whanganui alcohol or drugs were a factor in the crash.

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Police said the driver of this car lost control on a slight bend. The driver only suffered minor injuries. Photo / Supplied
Police said the driver of this car lost control on a slight bend. The driver only suffered minor injuries. Photo / Supplied

"If travelling on a longer trip take care on the roads and take regular breaks."

Whanganui police attended 118 crashes in the three months to the end of October, on average more than one a day. Ninety of those took place in the city and the remaining 28 were on rural roads.